DALLAS, Aug. 30 (UPI) -- It's crucial heading into fall sports for athletes to reduce their chances of suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament, a U.S. expert says.
Sports-medicine specialist Dr. Katherine Coyner, an orthopedic surgeon at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, said such injuries are even more common among female athletes than males -- it occurs eight times more often in women than men.
Biomechanics is one of the factors that come into play in understanding why women are more prone to tearing their ACLs, which connect the upper and lower leg bones and help stabilize the knee, Coyner said.
"Women have wider hips and tend to experience valgus collapse -- which is landing in a knock-kneed position -- when they jump or cut," Coyner said in a statement. "Also, women have stronger quadriceps in relation to their hamstrings than men. This leads to an imbalance that makes landing properly with a bent knee more difficult."
Specializing in a single sport, which can emphasize one set of muscles over another, can increase the chance of ACL injuries, Coyner added.
"The muscles we use playing on the playground or playing all sorts of sports no longer develop as completely, creating muscle imbalances," Dr. Coyner said."People become one-muscle dominant at the expense of other muscles, and that can apply too much force on the knee."
Coyner and other sports-medicine experts recommend exercise training programs that concentrates on strengthening core and leg muscles though running, jumping and balance exercises to create a well-rounded athlete.
|Additional Health News Stories|
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y., May 19 (UPI) --A Hempstead, N.Y., police officer shot and killed a 21-year-old Hofstra University student while aiming for the man holding her hostage, officials said.
SAN DIEGO, May 19 (UPI) --Singer Tim Lambesis' lawyer said the As I Lay Dying front man was taking steroids before being arrested for allegedly hiring a hit man to kill his wife.
MIAMI, May 19 (UPI) --The Miami Heat's Dwyane Wade said he wanted to make a Miami teen's prom "a memorable moment," so he surprised her by showing up at her senior prom.