What is an ACL injury? Todays topic is all about a common injury we see in football and netball players, that can be season-ending, or even career ending.
What is an ACL injury?
This means rupture of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL). This is where one of the main ligaments deep inside your knee is ruptured, or completely torn. This can leave your knee relatively unstable.
How does it happen?
Often an ACL rupture happens during a sudden change of direction when playing sport, and it can also happen from a contact injury such as when you’re tackled from the side, with force pushing your knee inwards while your foot is fixed to the ground. This will often also cause damage to the meniscus. The meniscus is a structure that helps to absorb shock in the knee.
How can physio help an ACL reconstruction?
In the first few weeks after your injury, your sports physio will assist to reduce swelling, and keep your knee moving as much as possible. This includes addressing muscle guarding, and managing the inflammation associated with the rupture.
Your sports physio will provide treatment, advice and exercises over the following stages including:
- Early recovery: reducing swelling and inflammation, regaining full range of movement in your knee
- Mid-stage recovery: focus on strength, balance and gradual return to function
- Late-stage recovery: build up strength, agility and work on sports-specific skills including running, jumping and cutting activities.
Your physio will guide you through each stage of your recovery. Exact timeframes differ from person to person, and knee to knee. Your recovery timeframe from surgery for an ACL rupture is generally around 9 to 12 months until you can safely return to sport.
Have you ruptured your ACL?
Or are you concerned you might have damaged it?
Our physios can check your knee stability, and if needed, send you for imaging. Book Online to see a sports physio now.