In November of 1995 Gayle Hatch weightlifter, Joey Ventrella, had ACL reconstruction as a result of a football injury. Joey was an outstanding high school running back and a junior national champion weightlifter. Joey won the 17 & Under Best Lifter award at the 1995 National Junior Weightlifting Championships. Coach Gayle Hatch's method of rehabilitation included weightlifting exercises such as squats and leg presses. Specificity of training was used to insure a carry over of strength gains to the playing field and platform. Emphasis on proper technique and progression from slower movements with light weight to quicker movements with heavier weight were part of the rehabilitative program. Joint isolation exercises such as leg extensions were not used. Weight bearing exercises like squats and leg presses were used because of the co-contraction of the quadriceps and hamstring resulting in a decrease in the shearing action at the knee. The combined surgical/rehabilitation was successful. In 1999 at the age of twenty, Joey won the American Open Weightlifting Championships in the 85kg class. Joey's best lifts in 1999 were a 140kg snatch and 180kg clean and jerk at a body weight of 83kg. Joey has 4.4 speed in the forty yard dash and a 42 inch vertical jump. The 42 inch vertical jump was the highest tested on the L.S.U. Football Team.
Rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament is one of the most devastating injuries an athlete can sustain. Good rehabilitation is imperative and some surgeons feel is just as important as any operative procedure.
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