Washington University in St. Louis study shows that most soccer players will retake the field after ACL tear

Reuters reported that a new study conducted by Dr. Robert Brophy, an orthopedic surgeon at Washington University in St. Louis, concluded that the majority of athletes can recuperate from ACL surgery well enough to return to playing soccer.

Over the past year, Brophy interviewed 100 athletes who had received ACL injuries in 2002 and 2003, asking them about their fitness levels over time, participation in the sport and any additional surgeries they underwent.

The chosen athletes varied widely among age demographics, skill levels and sex. Participants, according to the media outlet, were aged 11 to 53 when they were injured, and the majority of the group, 55 percent, were male.

Brophy said that of the 100 players, 72 would take the field again, with an average recovery taking about a year. However, older and female patients, who are traditionally thought of as being more at risk for this type of injury, skewed lower on these spectrums.

In speculating about the reason for these groups' lower rate of return, Brophy told the source, "They may be afraid of re-injury or feel like it's not worth the risk. Life demands may make the rehabilitation more challenging and more difficult to get through, as well as make it more difficult to say, '(It's) worth it to go back and play.'"

Of the athletes who did continue to participate in soccer post-surgery, about half stayed in the sport for another seven years or more. Thirty-six, the survey said, retired within several years of their procedure.

Proper footwear can help protect soccer players from ACL tears by providing support and ankle stability.

As athletes are upgrading their gear for the new season, they need to make sure they are taking good care of their investments. To do this, athletes everywhere are using Cleatskins cleat covers so they don't need to worry about damaging their cleats or other special athletic footwear, such as cycling, basketball, wrestling, cheer and volleyball shoes. Cleatskins make great gifts for athletes and are fashioned to fit a wide selection of athletic footwear.

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