Return to Sport Program

Return to Sport Program


ACL Rehab and EXCEL’s Return to Sport Program

It’s estimated that 100,000 – 200,000 injuries to the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) occur in the United States each year. These injuries often occur when making a sharp turn or stop with the foot planted. Following an ACL injury, many patients opt to undergo arthroscopic surgery to reconstruct the ligament. Recovery from ACL reconstruction surgery includes extensive physical therapy treatment.


It’s critical to find a physical therapist that will not only treat the initial post-operative phase by increasing your range of motion and decreasing swelling, but will also work with you to get you back to your prior level of competition.

Studies report that as few as only 63% of athletes who have undergone ACL reconstruction surgery have returned to their pre-injury sport. Even more alarming—once you have had surgery to repair your ACL, the risk of re-injury is even greater than the initial risk. And while ACL graft healing typically occurs around six months following surgery, research has demonstrated that the rehabilitation process can take anywhere from 7-18 months to get back to “normal.”


At Excel Physical Therapy, our Return to Sport (RTS) programming is founded on the most current ACL rehabilitation research and is tailored to the individual patient’s needs. We focus not only on increasing strength and endurance, but also improving the quality of movement and making sure you’re truly ready to return to your highest level of competition. A typical RTS program may include:

  • Balance and proprioceptive training
  • Neuromuscular re-education
  • Plyometric and agility training
  • Pre- and post- testing of a collection of functional activities

Our staff of skilled orthopedic and sports physical therapists have helped individuals of all athletic abilities and competition levels return to prior activity and beyond. Even if you’ve been cleared to play and don’t feel like you’re quite where you want to be, we can help you overcome that gap and return to competitive sport.

Ready to get started on your comeback? 

If you’re an athlete concerned about navigating the road to recovery following an ACL reconstruction surgery, let us be your guide. Find an EXCEL office near you or request an appointment online to learn more about our program.

BLOG: The Pop Heard Round the World (Cup): Women & ACL Injuries

Morristown Clinic Director Brianne O’Connor, PT, DPT takes a look at ACL injuries in women, against the backdrop of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team competing in the 2019 World Cup.