Mechanics of non-contact ACL injuries in female athletes (ACL PROJECT PREVENT)
As female participation rates at all levels of sports activities have dramatically increased, so have certain sports injuries. In particular, the incidence of ACL injury in female athletes has been reported to be 4 to 6 times greater than male athletes participating in the same sports. Little is known about women's sport-specific movement patterns and how they may contribute to knee injury. This 3-year interdisciplinary multi-site study, funded by the NIAMD and led by Professors Christopher Powers and George Salem, is designed to address these issues.
The purpose of this study is twofold: first, to identify gender-specific movement patterns that may predispose female athletes to non-contact ACL injuries during various sport activities, and second, to quantify the effects of an injury prevention program on altering potentially injurious lower extremity mechanics. In addition, the study will evaluate the mechanical and neuromuscular demands of specific exercises included in the injury prevention program to determine which may produce the desired "ACL protective" effects following training. The results of this study will address important questions related to the influence of gender, age and training on ACL injury potential, and will provide a foundation on which further investigation of injury prevention and rehabilitation can be based.
More information on ACL Project Prevent is available at http://pt.usc.edu/ACLprojectprevent/