Well, we have great news for you. You can prevent most knee and ACL injuries that keep you from the sports and activities you love.
It is shown through research that strength alone is Not predictive of primary knee injuries.
It is now known that improper neuromuscular control appears to be a significant causal risk factor of primary knee injuries. Neuromuscular control is a mouth full, but it simple means how your muscles are controlled by your nerves in your body. It turns out that alterations in neuromuscular control can lead to devastating knee injuries.
Altered hip and knee mechanics and lack of postural control during running, jumping, and landing are the strongest predictive risk factors for people who develop knee pain and knee injuries. Lack of good balance and landing mechanics are the strongest predictors of primary knee injuries. This means finding the right exercises and programs that optimize neuromuscular control is vital to prevent and treat knee pain and injury.
Since there is a direct link between poor neuromuscular control in your leg muscles and primary and secondary knee injuries, it is a must that you target the right neuromuscular movements and exercises to prevent injuries. If you have poor neuromuscular knee control you are likely to experience a knee injury. It is strongly recommended to develop a proper knee injury prevention protocol.
The Solution to poor neuromuscular control is to work on Eccentric exercises. Eccentric exercises are movements and exercises that make you control the downward portion of the movement your are performing. For example, when you do a squat, you start by standing in an upright position and when you lower yourself down by bending your knees, hips, and ankles, this is the eccentric portion of the squat. Most people go down too fast and have little to no control of their legs and knees.
When you practice slowing down the lowering (eccentric) portion of any of your movements you are developing better eccentric control and preventing injury at the same time. So, the next time you are doing your exercises practice lowering your body in a smooth, slow, and controlled way. This will help you and go a long way in preventing injuries and enhancing your performance.
Also, the added bonus is by slowing down the eccentric portion will add more muscle compared to if you go fast. By adding more muscle you will look better, feel better, and have more confidence in your daily life activities. Believe it or not, this works when you train the opposite un-injured leg. By observing thousands of clients and patients over the years I have seen and documented neuromuscular and strength gains in the injured knee by training the opposite, un-injured knee. For more details of this check out some of youtube and website videos showing how training the “good” side helps the “bad” side.
We have seen great results aver the past 20+ years by emphasizing eccentric control in all of the movements and exercises we prescribe.
Let us know what your results are by practicing the eccentric part of your exercises by slowing down the downward motions of your exercises.