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ACL Injury Prevention

After spending some time at some July recruiting events, I heard about more and more ACL tears. ACL injuries plague girls’ basketball. However, most approach ACL injuries as a fact of life, as an inevitable result of playing basketball. Few coaches take preventative measures. In Wisconsin, however, one coach takes his ACL injury prevention seriously:

Players now go through a 45-minute jump program three times a week. The girls learn how to land jumps properly and build knee strength using a combination of drills. Lipke said players do wall jumps to strengthen the calf muscles, knee tuck jumps, two-legged leap jumps and both forward and backward lunges. In all of the work, developing balance and proper form is emphasized.

A 10-minute dynamic warm-up is another key to Rice Lake’s preventative measures. The warm-up routine was developed by Mark Smith, a local physical therapist who has worked closely with Rice Lake High School since the string of ACL injuries began. The warm-up is done before every practice and includes plyometric work.

EDIT: Four old articles on ACL injury prevention:

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