The following ACL sprain exercises form part of our ACL Sprain rehab program. Created by elite sports physiotherapist Phil Pask they include mobility, proprioception, functional, plyometric, and agility exercises.
Stretching & mobility exercises
Mobility is most important and should begin as soon as possible. Exercises should not be painful to perform.
Gently push from side to side, and glide from top to bottom.
Scrunch the toes up. This can be done using a towel or picking up a pencil.
Sustained calf stretch
Take a resistance band and wrap it around both feet. Hold the other end of the band and pull your feet towards you and hold.
Myofascial hamstring stretch
There are 3 alternatives for hamstring stretches. Do whichever one you prefer.
Option 1: Standing
Place one foot in front of the other with hands on the floor. Straighten your legs keeping your hands flat on the floor, you should feel a stretch on the back leg.
Option 2: Sitting
Sit with one leg straight and one bent. Reach forward keeping your head and chest up, you should feel a stretch at the back of the straight leg.
Option 3: Lying on back
Lie on your back, and use a band to pull your leg up. Feel a stretch at the back of the leg.
Clam in extension with band
Lie on your side with your knees bent, then lift your top leg up as far as possible in a slow and controlled movement. Slowly lower your leg back down.
Single leg turnouts
Balance on one leg with the other knee bent, foot resting on the inside of the supporting leg. Whilst maintaining your balance turn the knee out and in, to work your hip muscles whilst maintaining control and balance.
Ice skaters with band
Place a resistance band around your knees to increase the load on your lateral hip muscles, and walk forward and backwards. Maintain a good posture by keeping your head and chest up.
Step down foot fixed
Stand with one foot on a box, and squat down until the toe of the free foot gently touches the floor. Then without using it to push off at all, stand again.
Inner range quads
Contract your quadriceps muscles and hold. Then use your hamstring muscles to push down, hold, relax and repeat.
Dumbbell squat to bench
Legs shoulder-width apart with the toes pointed out slightly. Bend your knees and slowly lower your body down onto the bench until your buttocks touch the bench. Don’t rest on the bench, slowly raise your body back up by pushing through your heels.
Single-leg suitcase lift
Use a weight in the same arm and the same leg you are working. Also use a weight on the opposite arm to the leg you are working.
A lock at wall (Leaning Tower)
Drive the knee upwards and hold the position.
Lateral A skipping drill
The Skipping drill is a progression of the sideways marching drill. Keep up on your toes, more dynamic.