What All Female Athletes Should Know About Knee Injuries

Female athletes have some unique sports medicine needs. This includes their higher risk of knee injuries.

The sports medicine experts at the Center for Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine of Tomball and Kingwood, Texas, provide care and support for female patients with athletic interests. Our team, led by Dr. Michael L. Blackwell, can educate you about your risks, and help you learn about preventive steps you can take to protect your knee joints.

Here’s what Dr. Blackwell wants female athletes to know about their risks of knee injuries.

Playing while female

Women’s bodies are statistically more prone to knee issues like anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries. This is due to the structure of the female knee joint. Women’s knees typically show more looseness and range of motion, and women often have less muscle mass built up around the knee.

ACL injuries often happen during non-contact sports. The force and momentum of your movements overstress your ACL, potentially leading to a ligament tear. 

You might damage your ACL if you quickly change direction, or if you’re landing with sudden force. Female athletes often land with knees moving inward, creating physical factors that make an ACL injury more likely.

Female athletes can keep pushing on the court or field, while still taking precautions to prevent knee injuries. An ACL tear can mean spending frustrating time on the sidelines while your injury fully heals, and even when you return, you’re at higher risk of subsequent ACL injuries after you’ve experienced one.

What you can do to prevent knee injuries

Developing your muscles and core strength is a great way to protect your joints. When you have core and extremity strength in the right balance with flexibility, you can avoid muscle and ligament tears. 

You’re more likely to suffer from an injury if your muscles are either overstretched or too tight, so balance is the key.

Take time to learn techniques that lower the risk to your knees. Your provider at the Center for Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine can recommend exercises and techniques to help female athletes strengthen and protect at-risk knee joints. We fully understand the unique physical needs of female athletes of all ages, including those at the high school level.

Support your whole-body health with a balanced diet, and don’t work out too hard when you’re already fatigued. Keep your mind and your technique sharp, and you won’t risk as many slip-ups and accidental injuries.

How we can help

For advice on preventing knee injuries, as well as top-of-the-line treatments for ACL damage that can minimize your recovery time, turn to the team at the Center for Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine.

If you have an ACL injury, you may need anti-inflammatory medications to control symptoms of pain, as well as physical therapy and potentially surgery to help your knee joint fully heal.

For patients who want to return to high-intensity athletic activity, surgery may be needed to stabilize the affected knee and prevent reinjury. Dr. Blackwell uses the state-of-the-art Mako robot-assisted technology to perform minimally invasive joint surgeries, reducing your recovery time.

To learn more about how female athletes can support and protect their knee from injuries, get in touch with Dr. Blackwell and his team at the Center for Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine today. You can schedule an appointment over the phone, or book online now.

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