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What Every Female Athlete Should Know About Knee Injuries

From Billie Jean King to Simone Biles, women have blazed trails and made huge splashes in the sports world, but none of them became successful without getting to know their bodies and training them properly. And if you’re a female athlete, understanding how vulnerable your knees are is especially important. 

Our team of orthopaedic experts at Somers Orthopaedic Surgery specializes in treating a wide variety of sports medicine issues. We understand the unique physical needs of female athletes and educate you on the best ways to protect your body, train more efficiently, and recover faster from injuries. Here’s everything you should know about your knees if you’re a female athlete. 

A closer look at your knee

As a female, your knees have some differences about which you should be mindful — some of them you can see. 

Have you ever looked in the mirror and noticed that your knees curve inward? That’s because your pelvis is naturally wide to make space for a baby. This creates a sharp angle where the bones in your knees meet, and consequently, your thighbone and kneecap don’t fit together in the same way that males’ knees tend to align. 

In addition to differences in skeletal alignment, women tend to have looser ligaments and less supportive muscle mass around their knees than men do. 

These structural issues make you more susceptible to a variety of knee injuries, especially anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears. In fact, female athletes are upwards of eight times more likely to sustain an ACL tear.  However, females athletes also commonly sustain overuse injuries about the knee such as patellar tendinitis.

Fortunately, there are a few practical things you can do to lower your risk of a serious knee injury. 

How you can prevent knee injuries

As part of our comprehensive sports medicine services, we equip you with customized training tools and techniques to help you support your body and play your sport safely. Some of the best things you can do to protect your knee against injury include:

Talk to us about how to practice proper jumping, running, and pivoting. We can guide you through a variety of exercises and techniques that help you land and move correctly, as well as increase your balance — all of which are crucial to protecting your knees.  There are a number of injury prevention programs that are geared toward reducing the risk of knee injuries specifically in female athletes, such as the FIFA 11+ program, and doing such a program regularly can help prevent injury.

Our knee injury treatment options

When the worst happens and you injure your knee, turn to our team of experts. We have comprehensive treatments that range from nonsurgical and noninvasive to advanced surgical techniques that help you recover quickly and fully. Depending on your needs and whether you have an acute or an overuse injury, we may recommend the following:

If your injury requires surgery, we have surgeons on staff who use state-of-the-art arthroscopy techniques that require smaller incisions and result in less bleeding, pain, and time in recovery than traditional surgery. 

Have more questions about avoiding or treating a knee injury? Don’t hesitate to reach out to our friendly staff online or over the phone and request an appointment today. We’re conveniently located in Carmel, Newburgh, Mt. Kisco, and Fishkill, New York, as well as Danbury, Connecticut. 

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