An ACL injury is a nightmare. If you're one of the staggering number of athletes who tear the crucial knee ligament in any given year—there are 150,000 of you, according to The New York Times—you know that it's a painful affair with a long, irksome rehab process. But your body isn't the only thing to suffer: your wallet does, too.
If you blow out your ACL, the final tab comes to roughly $15,000 on average, bearing in mind the total toll for surgery and rehab. It's a cost so high that researchers have gotten proactive. A new research report estimates that the price of starting a preventive, neuromuscular training program would drop the incidence of ACL tears among student-athletes to 1.5%, at a figure of about $1.25 per person per year for an institution or parent to administer. The research suggests that implementing neuromuscular training programs in schools for athletes involved in high-risk sports is both cost effective and can save a lot of knees.
If you're someone who likes playing sports that require incessant cutting—like, says, basketball, soccer, or tennis—you may wish to take note. If not, we'll put the injury in perspective for you. Here are four things that cost even less:
1. A DUI conviction:
That’s right: it’s costlier for you to blow out your knee than to make one of the dumbest decisions ever: driving home drunk. (Assuming you don't hurt anyone.) The projected costs of a Driving Under the Influence charge, after all the bail, fines, fees, and insurance comes to around $10,000, the nation-wide average.
2. A royal baby delivery:
In 2013, The New York Times looked at the birth of Prince George of Cambridge and estimated the cost to be $15,000. By contrast, in the United States, a baby birth is estimated to cost a total of $30,000, and $50,000 for a C-section.
3. Two weeks in the Maldives:
A two-week vacation costs about $10,500 using this package, which includes "split-level suites to two-bedroom villas and offers private sundecks" and a South Indian organic restaurant. (Flights run upward of $1,000.)
4. Become a licensed massage therapist:
Massage therapy school is done in hours, so you pay in dollar-per-hour. When all is said and done, you've paid around $10,000-$15,000 to become a licensed massage therapist.