Childhood sports present us with some of our finest and most enjoyable childhood memories; winning the championship basketball game, hitting that last homerun at the bottom of the 9th, and slamming the winning spike over the net. Children are active, that’s as obvious as anything. From an early age, children are encouraged to burn off this excess energy through sports. Whether they participate through their schools, intramurals, or other competitive travel sports organizations, there are numerous venues for parents to explore athletic opportunities for their children.
For most parents, however, it may seem like a stretch that a plausible risk actually does exist when it comes to your child experiencing an ACL injury through sports and athletic activities. Most often, we hear about professional athletes experiencing ACL injuries, simply due to the nature of the intensity within the sport that they play. At the professional level, the body is constantly being forced into intense physical activity that takes years of preparation to be able to endure.
With that said, it’s very easy to simply toss the idea of your child injuring their ACL while playing youth sports into the depths of your mind, almost to the point where it seems completely impossible. Unfortunately, ACL injury is actually one of the most common injuries experienced by adolescent athletes today. The question is, why?
Adolescent Risk For ACL Injury
Whether you believe it or not, any adolescent athlete is at risk for experiencing an ACL injury. Research presented at the American Orthopedic Society for Sports Medicine’s 2018 Annual Meeting shows that athletes who experience fatigue are at a greater risk for experiencing an ACL injury when performing. The study was based off of a sample of 85 athletes with an average age of 15.4 years old. 44.7% of those examined showed an increased risk of ACL injury after experiencing fatigue from sports, with 68% of those examined showing a medium to high risk of injury. The study further identified that those athletes who experienced at least 20% fatigue after completing the athletic exercise, their risk for experiencing an ACL injury increased.
When this comes to childhood sports, adolescent athletes who experience fatigue during their workouts, practices, or matches, their risk for experiencing an ACL injury is increased. These statistics are certainly a bit alarming, but they do require further research to be fully validated. The study’s lead researchers recommend ACL injury awareness programs be implemented in schools to help inform parents and children about how to best treat their bodies to ensure they remain healthy throughout their lives. After all, ACL injuries are quite serious, painful, and sometimes lingering. Protect your child by staying up to date on the current research and the best ways to prevent this type of injury.
If your child has experienced an ACL injury, contact OA today. Our team of physicians and orthopedics are experts in treating ACL injuries and providing patients and guardians with the information they need to help prevent such injuries in the future. Contact us today to inquire more about our treatments for ACL injuries.
Adolescent Sports Injuries
Youth Sports Injuries