Risk reduction programs in sports have been shown effectively reduce sports injury. In particular, the research on knee injuries, including ACL, in soccer have shown dramatic reductions in injury rates. These programs, often designed and implemented by Physical Therapists, include exercises designed to improve an athlete's strength, balance, coordination, and agility. Research shows these programs can reduce an athlete's risk of future injury by 30-80%.
A new study examined the impact of a commonly utilized program, 11+, on injury rates in collegiate male soccer players (Silvers-Granelli et al. Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy. 2018). 27 teams, including 675 players, participated in the study. The authors measured compliance rates with the program, as well as, injury rates among these participants. Compliance rates were categorized as low (1-19 doses/season), moderate (20-39 doses/season), and high (> 40 doses/season). As expected, compliance rates were negatively related to injury rates and days missed from practice or games. Participants with the highest compliance rates showed a significant reduction in injury or lost time.