Can athletic individuals with ACL injuries find relief through non-surgical treatments to restore knee mobility?


The body’s lower extremities help the individuals to be mobile but also help stabilize the body’s upper weight. From the hips to the feet, many people are on their feet and using every muscle group to allow functionality. Athletic individuals use their lower extremities to do various physical activities and are susceptible to injuries. An ACL injury is one of the most common and feared injuries that can impact an athletic person’s performance. These types of injuries affect the knees of the individual and can make a person feel miserable. However, numerous surgical and non-surgical treatments can help the recovery process of an ACL injury while helping the individual restore their motion to their lower extremities. Today’s article looks at what an ACL injury is, how it affects the knees, and how non-surgical treatments can help restore knee mobility from ACL injuries. We discuss with certified associated medical providers who consolidate our patients’ information to assess ACL injuries affecting their mobility. We also inform and guide patients while asking their associated medical provider intricate questions to integrate and provide them with numerous non-surgical treatments to be incorporated into their personalized treatment plan. Dr. Jimenez, D.C., includes this information as an academic service. Disclaimer.


What Is An ACL Injury?


Do you feel aches or pains around your knees after a long exercise regime? Do you feel or hear a loud popping sensation in your knees? Or do you experience pain and swelling affecting your ability to be mobile? Many of these pain-like scenarios are correlated with ACL injuries, that is amongst the most common and feared injuries for athletic individuals and non-athletic individuals. However, we must look at the ACL itself to better understand ACL injuries. The ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) plays an important role as it helps with knee joint stabilization, prevents excessive forward movements from the tibia (shin bone), and limits rotational knee movements. (Yoo & Marappa-Ganeshan, 2024) This ligament is one of the most injured structures affecting athletic performance. ACL injuries and tears can lead to many individuals having knee instability and an increased risk of future knee osteoarthritis. (Atik, 2024) This is because ACL injuries typically occur during physical activities involving sudden stops, jumps, or directional impacts to the knees.


How Does It Affect The Knees?

So, how do ACL injuries affect the knees of the individual? As stated earlier, the ACL is a crucial ligament that stabilizes the knee joint during movement. When that ligament is injured, it can cause pain-like symptoms like:

  • Pain
  • Limited range of motion
  • Knee instability
  • Altered biomechanics

This causes many people to have reduced physical activity levels, which can become a great economic burden to their daily routine. (Wang et al., 2020)  When dealing with ACL injuries, it can also affect the meniscus in the knees as cartilage erosion often accelerates and can potentially lead to early osteoarthritis, which correlates with ACL injuries. (Key et al., 2022) However, when a person is dealing with ACL injuries, there are numerous treatments to reduce the pain-like symptoms caused by ACL injuries and help restore knee mobility.

Overcoming An ACL Injury-Video

Overcoming an ACL Injury | El Paso, Tx (2023)

Non-Surgical Treatments For ACL Injuries


When finding the right treatment for ACL injuries, many individuals can incorporate non-surgical treatments as part of their customized treatment plan. Non-surgical treatments can vary and may be suitable for individuals with partial ACL tears and knee instability and who have been involved in low-impact sports. When athletic individuals are dealing with ACL injuries, by incorporating non-surgical treatments, they can address the impairments, achieve functional stability, and safely return to their physical activities while improving the neuromuscular system to achieve functional knee stability. (Diermeier et al., 2020) Non-surgical treatments can positively impact many individuals by relieving the overlapping pain-like issues affecting the knees and the severity of ACL injuries.


Chiropractic Care

Chiropractic care is one of the many non-surgical treatments that can benefit individuals dealing with ACL injuries. Chiropractic care incorporates mechanical and manual manipulation to diagnose and treat any musculoskeletal issues associated with ACL injuries and emphasizes the body’s natural ability to heal itself. For many athletic and non-athletic individuals with ACL injuries, chiropractic care can offer several benefits:

  • Pain management
  • Enhancing mobility and flexibility
  • Improving balance
  • Strengthening supporting muscles

Chiropractic care can help individuals by stretching and strengthening weak muscles and soft tissues that can help break down scar tissues that may have surrounded the knee while improving blood flow to the injured area. Chiropractors can also incorporate specific rehabilitation exercises and physical therapy for the individual, focusing on strength, flexibility, and stability in the knees and surrounding muscles.


Physical Therapy

Another form of non-surgical treatment is through physical therapy. Physical therapy can help many individuals with ACL injuries through strength training, balance, and range of motion exercises that are catered to strengthen the surrounding muscles and help maintain the knee’s stability, flexibility, and mobility. Stretching exercises like Pilates and Tai Chi are favorable for ACL rehabilitation as they are important for functional outcomes and ACL stability. (Giummarra et al., 2022) Additionally, many individuals can utilize a functional knee brace to provide additional support to the knees when doing any physical therapy, as they can help stabilize the knee and prevent unwanted movements that could exacerbate the ACL injury. While ACL injuries are serious, non-surgical treatments offer viable alternatives for many athletes. Individuals can effectively manage their injuries and lead active, fulfilling lives by focusing on physical therapy, utilizing supportive braces, and adopting lifestyle modifications.



Atik, O. S. (2024). The risk factors for second anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tear after ACL reconstruction. Jt Dis Relat Surg, 35(2), 255-256.

Diermeier, T., Rothrauff, B. B., Engebretsen, L., Lynch, A. D., Ayeni, O. R., Paterno, M. V., Xerogeanes, J. W., Fu, F. H., Karlsson, J., Musahl, V., Svantesson, E., Hamrin Senorski, E., Rauer, T., Meredith, S. J., & Panther Symposium, A. C. L. T. C. G. (2020). Treatment after anterior cruciate ligament injury: Panther Symposium ACL Treatment Consensus Group. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc, 28(8), 2390-2402.

Giummarra, M., Vocale, L., & King, M. (2022). Efficacy of non-surgical management and functional outcomes of partial ACL tears. A systematic review of randomised trials. BMC Musculoskelet Disord, 23(1), 332.

Key, S., Baygin, M., Demir, S., Dogan, S., & Tuncer, T. (2022). Meniscal Tear and ACL Injury Detection Model Based on AlexNet and Iterative ReliefF. J Digit Imaging, 35(2), 200-212.

Wang, L. J., Zeng, N., Yan, Z. P., Li, J. T., & Ni, G. X. (2020). Post-traumatic osteoarthritis following ACL injury. Arthritis Res Ther, 22(1), 57.

Yoo, H., & Marappa-Ganeshan, R. (2024). Anatomy, Bony Pelvis and Lower Limb, Knee Anterior Cruciate Ligament. In StatPearls.


Professional Scope of Practice *

The information herein on "Managing ACL Injuries Without Surgery: A Comprehensive Guide" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.

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Dr. Alex Jimenez
Specialties: Stopping the PAIN! We Specialize in Treating Severe Sciatica, Neck-Back Pain, Whiplash, Headaches, Knee Injuries, Sports Injuries, Dizziness, Poor Sleep, Arthritis. We use advanced proven therapies focused on optimal Mobility, Posture Control, Deep Health Instruction, Integrative & Functional Medicine, Functional Fitness, Chronic Degenerative Disorder Treatment Protocols, and Structural Conditioning. We also integrate Wellness Nutrition, Wellness Detoxification Protocols and Functional Medicine for chronic musculoskeletal disorders. We use effective "Patient Focused Diet Plans", Specialized Chiropractic Techniques, Mobility-Agility Training, Cross-Fit Protocols, and the Premier "PUSH Functional Fitness System" to treat patients suffering from various injuries and health problems. Ultimately, I am here to serve my patients and community as a Chiropractor passionately restoring functional life and facilitating living through increased mobility. Purpose & Passions: I am a Doctor of Chiropractic specializing in progressive cutting-edge therapies and functional rehabilitation procedures focused on clinical physiology, total health, functional strength training, functional medicine, and complete conditioning. We focus on restoring normal body functions after neck, back, spinal and soft tissue injuries. We use Specialized Chiropractic Protocols, Wellness Programs, Functional & Integrative Nutrition, Agility & Mobility Fitness Training and Cross-Fit Rehabilitation Systems for all ages. As an extension to dynamic rehabilitation, we too offer our patients, disabled veterans, athletes, young and elder a diverse portfolio of strength equipment, high-performance exercises and advanced agility treatment options. We have teamed up with the cities' premier doctors, therapist and trainers in order to provide high-level competitive athletes the options to push themselves to their highest abilities within our facilities. We've been blessed to use our methods with thousands of El Pasoans over the last 3 decades allowing us to restore our patients' health and fitness while implementing researched non-surgical methods and functional wellness programs. Our programs are natural and use the body's ability to achieve specific measured goals, rather than introducing harmful chemicals, controversial hormone replacement, un-wanted surgeries, or addictive drugs. We want you to live a functional life that is fulfilled with more energy, a positive attitude, better sleep, and less pain. Our goal is to ultimately empower our patients to maintain the healthiest way of living. With a bit of work, we can achieve optimal health together, no matter the age, ability or disability.