MCL Sprain Rehabilitation

What is an MCL Sprain?

An MCL sprain or Medial Collateral Ligament sprain is a tear to the medial ligaments on the inside of the knee. It is usually caused by twisting or direct impact but may develop gradually over time through overuse.

Symptoms consist of pain and sometimes swelling on the inside of the knee. Injuries are graded 1, 2, or 3 depending on the severity of the injury.

Who is this program suitable for?

This program is suitable for grade 1 and 2 MCL sprains. Ideal for both beginner and elite-level athletes.

How does it work?

The program consists of 5 phases. You progress through the phases, only moving on to the next phase when you have reached specific exit criteria. Phil introduces each phase and guides you through the program via a series of videos.

The app tells you exactly what to do each day (Today’s tasks) and records your progress to be reviewed later by yourself, or your coach/physio. We don’t just aim to heal your injury with this program but enable you to come back even stronger than before.

Program structure

Phil’s ACL Sprain rehabilitation program comprises the following:

Phase 1

Phase 1 begins as soon as possible after injury and can last up to 2 or 3 weeks depending on your grade of injury. The aim of phase 1 is to protect the injured ligament to allow it to repair to its optimal strength and as close to its original length as possible.

You can expect phase 1 to last up to a couple of weeks for most grade 1 and 2 injuries but it will depend on how bad your injury is.

Phase 2

The aim of phase 2 is to regain the normal range of movement and increase the ability of your knee to withstand load but in a controlled environment. We introduce some functional movement patterns using mainly body weight but also introduce some external loading.

Depending on the grade of injury, phase 2 is likely to last between 7 – 14 days for a grade 1, and 14 – 21 days for a grade 2.

Phase 3

The aim of Phase 3 is to prepare your knee to withstand heavier loads throughout a full range of movement. We introduce dynamic loading such as hopping, jumping, and running up to 75% pace. We still protect your knee by using predictable loading and simple agility drills to restrict the chance of re-injury.

The ligament is still protected to some extent, as it is still “remodelling” and isn’t fully back to normal for some time. Depending on the grade of injury this stage may take 3-4 weeks post-initial injury for a Grade 1 or up to 4-6 weeks for a Grade 2.

Phase 4

The aim of Phase 4 is to prepare and return you to your sport/activity safely with the ability to perform at your best with confidence. This confidence will be born out of completing the demanding exercises in this section including heavier loads, unpredictable movements, changes of direction, and agility all performed under pressure and fatigue.

Phase 5

Phase 5 is aimed at preventing re-injury. We would suggest that you use the next 6 weeks to monitor how your knee responds to normal training routines.

What is included?

The program consists of the following elements:

Treatment & Healing

This covers how and when to apply treatment such as cold therapy & compression, heat, massage, and taping.


Over 60 different exercises with video demonstrations covering mobility & stretching, activation, strengthening, motion control/proprioception, and functional.

Priority support

If you have any questions about the program or your progress then use in-app support to get in touch with our qualified sports therapist for advice.

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