Sports Reaction Center Implements New Program to Prevent ACL Injuries in Youth Sport
The Bellevue, Wash.-based physical therapy clinic provides a new program to prevent the common ACL injury in at-risk athletes.
BELLEVUE, Wash., March 25, 2013 /PRNewswire-iReach/ — A torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), located in the middle of the knee, often represents an athlete’s worst nightmare. A torn ACL is one of the most common sports-related injuries, in sports like soccer, where players often engage in quick changes of direction. Sports Reaction Center (SRC), a Bellevue physical therapy center, has implemented a comprehensive ACL Injury Risk Assessment and Injury Prevention Program that is scientifically proven to reduce the risk of injury by as much as 88%, improving current and long-term health. SRC now offers the ACL Risk Assessment and Prevention Programto reduce the chances of an athlete experiencing an ACL injury.
Over 250,000 ACL tears occur each year in the U.S. (1). This type of injury typically means a year of no sports participation, painful and expensive surgery and rehabilitation, and an increased likelihood of re-injury. Female athletes are at higher risk. Degenerative arthritis is the long term consequence. With the number of annual ACL injuries so high, SRC found it necessary to implement a method to predict and prevent risk.
The ACL Risk Assessment and Prevention program is individualized and athletes are coached in mastering each phase before moving on to the next. The program involves a dynamic video analysis of risk and five phases of progressively more challenging exercises over three months to reduce the risk of ACL rupture. This helps at-risk athletes improve their body mechanics to lessen the chances of experiencing injury.
The dynamic video analysis determines an individual’s risk of injury. The assessment involves a video review of the athlete during athletic motion to determine one’s probability of suffering an abduction injury at the knee, which often translates into an ACL injury. Once the analysis is completed, the exercise phase begins.
The Prevention Program consists of balance challenges, landing skills, muscle imbalance fixes, core strength, and power development. The activities are designed to correct an athlete’s body mechanics. Over time, SRC staff adjusts the athlete’s body alignment during function, teaching the athlete to execute the drills properly, reducing the likelihood of damaging the knee over time. Following completion of the program, SRC conducts a post-test to verify that the injury risk is in fact reduced.
The SRC prevention program is based on research, and also on the “FIFA 11+,” a complete warm-up program designed to reduce injuries among male and female soccer players. FIFA 11+ was developed by the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), and its effectiveness has been proven in a scientific study. Teams that performed the program at least twice a week had 30-50% fewer injured players (2).
Although ACL injuries are often seen in team sports, more than 70% of such injuries occur little or no contact with another athlete (3). SRC is dedicated to lowering the number of annual injuries by providing athletes with the means to employ correct body mechanics during cutting and jumping athletic activities.
“The best strategy in dealing with an ACL injury is to avoid it all together,” SRC founder Neil Chasan said.
About the Sports Reaction Center (SRC):
Based in Bellevue, Washington and attracting athletes of all levels from the Bellevue, Seattle, Kirkland and Redmond areas, as well as around the United States, the Sports Reaction Center(SRC) was founded by Neil Chasan in 1997. SRC performs sports physical therapy services that incorporate innovative technology such as Dynavision, OptoJump and the NASA-developed Alter-G. The clinic additionally offers concussion management and biomechanical assessment. SRC’s clients include multiple athletes who have qualified for the Olympic Trials in Track and Field, as well as marathoner Mike Sayenko, Olympic hurdler Virginia Powell, and NFL, NBA and MLB players. The clinic also works with area organizations such as Club Northwest, VO2 Multisports, and the Seattle Rugby Club. A graduate of the University of Washington’s physical therapy program in 1982, Chasan is a consultant to the U.S. Olympic Training Center, U.S. Rugby Sports Medicine, and Alter G. Neil is the author of the book Total Conditioning for Golfers, and the creator of the video “The Swing Reaction System”. Neil published “Pain Free Back”, an iPhone application. A clinical faculty member of the University of Washington’s physical therapy program since 1990, Chasan teaches and consults with physical therapists around the world.
(1) “ACL Injury Prevention and Facts.” uvsef.org. Upper Valley Sports Education Foundation, n.d. 11 Mar. 2013. uvsef.org/events-aclstats.html
(2) “Football Development.” FIFA.com. Federation International Football Association, n.d. 11 Mar. 2013. fifa.com/aboutfifa/footballdevelopment/medical/playershealth/the11/index.html
(3) “An Athlete’s Nightmare: Tearing the ACL.” U.S National Library of Medicine. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. 11 Mar. 2013. nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/magazine/issues/summer08/articles/summer08pg24-26.html
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SOURCE Sports Reaction Center