Can You Run With A Torn ACL

So, Can You Run With A Torn ACL?

Can You Run With A Torn ACL?


The ACL is responsible for knee stabilization and is crucial for dynamic movement.

Since running is a linear motion, the meniscus and other components of the knee can handle the stress of running.

That being said, confirm with your orthopedic surgeon to ensure this is true for you.

Can You Run With A Torn ACL
Can You Run With A Torn ACL

ACL Functions

The main purpose of the ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) is knee joint stabilization. There are four ligaments in the knee, two lateral and two cruciate.

Cruciate ligaments work in unison to allow the knee to move back and forth. The ACL prevents the tibia from slipping in front of the femur.

To perform dynamic athletic movements, the ACL is critical.

Can I Damage My Knee (More) By Running With A Torn ACL?

Yes and no.

The answer to this question depends on if you will get surgery, complementary injuries, and most importantly what your surgeon tells you.

When you run with a torn ACL, the previous workload is inherited by the meniscus.

The meniscus is sufficient for linear jogging and certainly for walking. When running with a torn ACL, there is the risk of damaging the meniscus.

However, if you are getting ACL reconstruction, there is most likely nothing you can damage that your orthopedic surgeon cannot repair during surgery.


Based on personal experience, having torn my own ACL, it’s safe to say that it is okay to jog after tearing your ACL.

It will take a few days for the initial swelling of the injury to go down, but afterward, going for a jog is likely okay.

Avoiding movement other than walking before your ACL reconstruction surgery is the best-case scenario. However, jogging, biking, or other low-stress linear movements should be okay.

All this being said, it will ultimately be at the discretion of your physician. Please confer with them because they know your individual situation best.

Can You Run With A Torn ACL - More About ACL

What Is The ACL Recovery Process Like?

ACL tears are an incredibly difficult obstacle to overcome. It is one of the most testing, unfortunate setbacks any athlete can suffer.

It is a one to a two-year recovery process that comes with ups and plenty of downs.

However, with each day, each week, and each month, you will feel the progress. To ensure a speedy and proper recovery, taking rehab seriously is imperative. What you put into your ACL recovery is what you will get out of it.

With each physical therapy session, the discomfort becomes lesser and lesser. Each step becomes easier and easier.

For a more detailed description of the ACL rehabilitation process, click here.

How To Tell If You Tore Your ACL

If you think you may have torn your ACL based on these symptoms, it is imperative to see an orthopedic surgeon or go to the ER as soon as possible.

Running With A Torn ACL: Other FAQs

Can You Workout Upper Body After ACL Tear?

You’ll usually need to wait 6-10 weeks.

Due to the nature of ACL reconstruction, the newly formed ligament is in its weakest and most vulnerable state 6-8 weeks after surgery.

The leg drive used in upper body workouts generates enough force to retear the ACL graft.

Learn more here.

What Is Worse, ACL or Meniscus Tear?

ACL Tear.

Both ACL and meniscus injuries are serious and may justify surgery. However, ACL injuries tend to be far more severe and take exponentially longer to recover from.

Best Diet For ACL Recovery

High protein, low inflammatory foods.

Battling inflammation is one of the biggest struggles throughout the ACL rehabilitation process. To mitigate the amount of inflammation, avoid inflammatory foods and beverages.

Muscle atrophy is inevitable after ACL surgery. To maintain/regain muscle as effectively as possible, make sure to be consuming enough protein.

Can You Shower After ACL Surgery

It depends.

Each hospital/surgeon will provide you with different sets of instructions.

One may have you wear a plastic bag around your leg, while one might just have you wait 48 hours (my case).

Either way, listen to the instructions provided to you by your hospital.

To learn more, click here.

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