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ACL injuries and women's athletics

ACL injuries and women's sports

ACL injuries appear to be happening more frequently today than they did in the past. This is in part because most athletes demand much more from themselves as compared to a generation ago. As the speed and agility of athletes increases, so does the amount of force that is sent through the ligaments of the knee. Women appear to be particularly susceptible to ACL injuries, and there is an ongoing debate in the sports medicine community about why this may be the case. In 1995, an article was published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine that found that female basketball players in the NCAA tore their ACLs four times more often than male basketball players. In the same study, women who played NCAA soccer sustained ACL injuries twice as often as male soccer players. While researchers have suggested that the increased rate of ACL injuries in women may be due to differences in ligament strength, anatomy of the knee, jumping ability, muscle strength and coordination, there is not a uniformly accepted reason for why this occurs. As ACL injuries have become more common, more and more research is being done on how to prevent them.

 

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