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The Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) lies deep within the knee joint, connecting the thigh bone with the shin bone. Its function is to prevent excessive forward movement of the shin in relation to the thigh and also to prevent excessive rotation at the knee joint. The ACL can be injured in several different ways during football, most notably by landing from a jump onto a bent knee then twisting, or landing on a knee that is over-extended. Direct contact on the knee from opponents can also cause damage to the ACL.
Proprioception training using a wobble board is thought to be very effective in the prevention of knee ligament injuries, as well as during rehabilitation.
Wobble boards are designed to assist the re-education of the proprioceptive system by improving sensory function around the knee. Previous research has also shown that wobble board training improves single leg stance ability and balance, while other studies have suggested that patients who underwent wobble board training experienced significantly fewer knee ligament injuries.
All ACL injuries require the opinion of an orthopaedic consultant. During the immediate aftermath of an ACL injury the PRICE treatment protocol is most effective. This is an acronym for Protection, Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation.
The injured tissues should be protected from further damage by using a knee brace.
Rest from sports is essential, but even excessive walking should be avoided.
The Aircast Knee Cryocuff is the most effective method of providing ice therapy and is the professional's choice. It can provide continuous ice cold water and compression for 6 hours and significantly reduce knee pain and swelling.
If using ice, the use of an Ice Bag is recommended for it's safe application to avoid the risk of cold burns.
Compression can be provided by the intermittent use of an Aircast Knee Cryocuff to reduce knee swelling and relieve pain.
To relieve knee pain and prevent knee swelling, the knee is elevated above waist height.