New research in the strength and conditioning field has shown a direct correlation between the strength of the hip, specifically the external rotators and abductors, and the risk of NON-CONTACT Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injury (Khayambashi K, et al. 2016).
3% of the 501 athletes tested during the research study were running, walking, jumping, skipping and other activities where there was no blunt force exerted on the knee (Khayambashi K, et al. 2016).
As running, jumping and skipping are all heavily featured throughout the CrossFit program, it seems pertinent to add in exercises to strengthen the external rotators and abductors of the hip in order to prehabilitate from this particular injury.
3 Exercises To Prevent This From Happening To You
1A. Banded Crab Walks
1B. Banded Hip Circles
2. Banded Hip Bridge
3. Rear Foot Elevate Split Squats
For each movement, complete 3x10-20 reps. Add it to your already, ridiculously long, religious CrossFit warm up/cool down to increase strength and avoid potential ACL injury.
Whilst no current studies exist on ACL injury as related to CrossFit, it is an important take home point that strengthening the external rotators and abductors of the hip has downstream positive implications for the health of the knee.
-Coach Dylan Sorensen
AWF (L-1), CF (L-1), CF (STM) Ex. Prof. (3-4), Current Osteo student (2nd year), Member of the Australian Weightlifting Federation. Member of the Victorian Weightlifting Association. Member of Fitness Australia.
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References & Original Article:
2. Frank H. Netter MD, Netter's Atlas of Human Anatomy, 6th edition, USA 2014