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My high school, teenage daughter is a soccer player. When I watch her run and jump, I notice that her knees knock together. Is she at risk for a serious knee injury?


Based on the observations you describe, I would most be concerned about injury to her Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL). Depending on which article you read, females are 2-8x more likely to tear their ACL than their male counterparts. Researchers locally at OSU, nationally and internationally are baffled by this phenomenon and are trying to identify the cause. It was postulated that it was due to poor mechanics, or hormones, or pelvic position. To date, we do not know the cause of this increased incidence of ACL tears in the female population, but yet, we still have a problem. Your question is a good one. Not only for prevention, possibly, of ACL tears but other conditions of the hip, knee, foot or ankle. Excessive stress in the positions that you describe, especially during motions of running and jumping, can put pressure on your joints of greater than 4x your body weight. This truly will irritate muscle, tendon, bone and/or ligamentous structures. Many programs across the country are available to help teach girls and boys with poor jumping mechanics become better movers. If we can improve mechanics, often we can decrease load and stress to joints, decrease pain (e.g., knee cap pain, patellar tendonitis) and improve strength and performance by merely decreasing wasted energy required to control movement. Sportsmetrics™ is one such program that we offer to improve function by focusing on flexibility, strength, balance and plyometric (jump training) in a controlled and feedback driven environment. Please see our website at for more information.
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