Here in the Pacific Northwest, we see a lot of knee injuries during the ski season. Skiing places a lot of stress on the knee joint. It requires the knees to dynamically move inward and outward in order to steer you down the mountain. When the knee moves inward, it is very susceptible to injury. If you’ve got strong quads and strong hips, your body does a great job of controlling this movement and you are able to ski down the mountain all season without any injuries. However, if your quad and hip muscles are not able to handle these repeated forces, you may be susceptible to knee injuries.
Not all skiing injuries are preventable. There are times when you encounter an unfamiliar terrain and a ski gets stuck and causes the knee to bend uncontrollably inward. However, many of the skiing knee injuries that we see in the clinic are the result of a lack of muscular strength and endurance through the quads and hips.
The Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) is just one of the many important ligaments that helps provide stability to the knee joint. It is a well-known ligament because ACL tears are a very common injury, especially among skiers. An ACL injury is a season-ending injury for skiiers. The typical return-to-sport time following an ACL injury is 6-12 months.
The good news is that you can help prevent ski-related knee injuries through a proper prehab program. Developing strength and endurance through specific muscles in your legs can significantly help to reduce your risk of injury. Your Physical Therapist can perform an evaluation and assessment of your movement patterns and identify weak muscles that may be increasing your injury risk with skiing. Your Physical Therapist can help guide you through a program that will strengthen these muscles and improve your movement patterns in order to set you up for a safe and healthy ski season. Come schedule an appointment with us today!
Northwest Wellness is located at:
37430 Pacific Hwy S.
Federal Way, WA 98003