Fatigue is Not a Risk Factor for ACL Injuries:Mythbuster Monday
Although I have torn my ACL twice, researched ACL injuries for 7 years and presented internationally regonized research on ACL risk reduction. Yet I still know very little about why ACL injuries occur. However, every day we come a little closer and gain a better understanding the mechanism of this injury.
Although we don’t understand, the exact causes, we are able to identify risk factors for injury that predispose people to be at a. higher risk. Although many risk factors are backed by research, some are complete misconceptions. One of the most commonly argued risk factor is that fatigue puts us at greater risk for ACL injuries. The argument is based around the idea that fatigue will alter our biomechanics in a negative manner. However, the research has shown that the changes we see in a fatigue state actually puts us at a lower risk. In fact Hewett and Webster(two of the top ACL researchers in the world) foun d that fatigue cared us to demonstrate decreased forces, increased knee and hip flexion. Each of these puts us at lower risk for injury.
Real world data also supports that fatigue is not a risk factor for ACL injuries. There is no association between time of season or game qith increased risk of ACL injuries. Infact a recent systematic review even showed 64% of soccer ACL injuries happen in the first half of the game