Football Season Has Started – Protect Your Knees
Whether school has started in your district or not, the football team has been practicing for a couple of weeks by now. The coaches are reminding their players to stay hydrated, because it is so hot outside. But not many coaches remember to tell their players to protect their knees to avoid knee surgery.
Football Season Is Knee Injury Season
All it takes is a wrong step or a rough tackle to put too much pressure on a knee joint. Some of the common knee injuries that happen during football season include torn ACLs, meniscus tears, and kneecap instability. As a football player, the fear of a knee injury is haunting, because these are the injuries that can keep the player on the sideline for the season.
What to Do to Prevent Knee Injuries
The best way to avoid being sidelined with knee surgery and the resulting physical therapy and recovery is to prevent the injury from happening to begin with. The best way to prevent as many knee injuries as possible is to:
- Perform warm-up exercises before and after practice
- Run stairs to strengthen the muscles and ligaments supporting your knees
- Make sure your cleats are properly fit to your feet and provide enough support
- Eat healthy meals that include calcium and protein
- Get plenty of sleep
And of course, try not to get tackled!
What to Do If You Sustain a Knee Injury
If you sustain an injury on or off the playing field, the most important immediate action you can take is to minimize swelling. You may know right away that it is an ACL tear from these symptoms, but even if you’re not sure, treat the injury seriously. Ice the knee, elevate the leg, and do not put any weight on it or try to walk. Even if you don’t think you need knee surgery, it’s best to find out how extensive the injury is and determine your best course of action. Whether that will be surgery, physical therapy, or some combination will depend on the nature and seriousness of the injury.
If you have a knee injury or knee pain that’s keeping you from playing your best, call (512) 477-6341 or fill out the form on this page to schedule an appointment.