The RackHow to Exercise After an ACL Injury
Prevent repeat injuries with an emphasis on lower-body strength and mobility.
TAKING IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
Glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves: These four essential muscles are critical to the support of your knee. Try exercises that focus on resistance (take it slow and steady), pylometrics, and overall balance and mobility. The idea is to minimize the amount of work your ACL is doing, and maximize the support and flexibility it needs to stay strong.
Glutes, the "powerhouse of the body," according to Camp, should be a primary target in your workout routine. Try exercises like clamshells—lying on your side with your feet together and then pulling your knees apart with a resistance band wrapped around your upper thigh—to focus in on your glutes. Side stepping with a resistance band on your knees or squats will also help with your glutes and quad control. For hamstring workouts try Romanian deadlifts or glute-ham raises and calf raises to strengthen your calves. Biking is also another surefire way to hit all the key lower-body spots.