Protecting Our Knees

I was going to write about this anyway, but then I found out it was on a fellow blogger’s brain as well.

Tuesday night at practice, one of our new players, a young chica named Brittany was running around, stepped in a hole she didn’t see, heard a crack and fell to the ground. We carried her off to the sidelines and she was experiencing a lot of pain on the side of her knee, probably something with her ACL/MCL. She’ll have to go get it checked out to know for sure, but enough of us had had knee issues that it was a good guess.

Situations like these are really common in women’s rugby. Knock on every piece of wood imaginable, but I’m really surprised I’ve been playing for as long as I have and not blown out my knee. Knock on wood again.

In high school, I played basketball and ran sprints and hurdles in track. Both really common sports for knee injuries. My hurdle races could be jarring on my knees if I came down hard or didn’t get the right clearance. Then in rugby, there’s so much fluid running, cutting, agility and impact required, a lot of that is in your legs and knees.

Petrie in California also blogged about it this week and included a few good links that might be worth checking out. I definitely looked at this one – Top 10 to avoiding knee injury – and was happy to see I’m already doing a lot of this to help keep my knees healthy.

And looking back, I was always trying to make sure a new player like Brittany, who wasn’t very athletic, was aware of proper alignment to help her body stay healthy. Fate just threw a hole in the mix. A shame really.

If you have any other good advice or links to share, please do so.

UPDATE: In the comments, a reader made a great point that I’d like to share and dumb me, forgot to mention.

“Just so people don’t get too freaked out – there are and equivalent amount of knee injuries in rugby as there are in soccer. Women have a greater tendancy to tear their ACL/MCL than men due to their body composition and the way they use their muscles – see here
http://www.hughston.com/hha/a_11_3_2.htm and here: http://www2.jsonline.com/alive/sports/jun99/running060799.asp

So as female athletes, we need to be aware of this and really take care of ourselves to prevent injuries like these through simple exercises, diet and health.

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3 responses to “Protecting Our Knees

  1. Anonymous

    Just so people don’t get too freaked out – there are and equivalent amount of knee injuries in rugby as there are in soccer. Women have a greater tendancy to tear their ACL/MCL than men due to their body compistion and the way they use their muscles – see here
    http://www.hughston.com/hha/a_11_3_2.htm and here: http://www2.jsonline.com/alive/sports/jun99/running060799.asp

  2. Blondie

    Great point! I’ll add that to the post.

    Thanks!

  3. John Birch

    I might add that the problem is not necessarily confined to contact sport. There are a heck of a lot of knee injuries in women’s cricket – especially amongst fast bowlers. My wife’s career ended as a result of one, as did at least two others in her team.

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