ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A local orthopedic surgeon is seeing an increase in ACL injuries among teenage female athletes.

“Absolutely clearly, female athletes are more prone to injuries for an ACL than male athletes are,” says Dr. Stephen Benz, orthopedic surgeon at St. Anthony’s Hospital.

Benz says part of the reason for the increase in female ACL injuries is because there are so many more young girls taking part in sports today. Anatomical differences between the sexes also play a part.

READ MORE: Overuse Injuries Becoming More Common in Young Athletes

“Males tend to have a little bit narrower pelvis relative to their height. Women high a wider pelvis, and as such the angle where their hips come off [is] a little bit different than what men’s are. It’s a little steeper angle and that puts the knee at more of a risk,” he says.

Another reason could be hormonal differences. Benz says recent studies show proper training and conditioning can help lower the number of ACL injuries, especially core strengthening of the abdomen, back and hips.

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