Exercises to Do After a Knee Replacement

Introduction:It is so important to do exercises after you have a knee replacement done or even after any kind of knee surgery. It is amazing how much range of motion you lose after having a knee replacement surgery.

Here is a list of five different knee exercises that my physical therapist recommended that I do several times a day to help my knee recover quicker and easier. I would strongly recommend doing these five exercises several times a day.

Be sure to check with your doctor or your physical therapist before doing any knee exercises to make sure that these exercises are for you.

  • 01

    Straight Leg Raise Exercise

    You can do a straight leg raise exercise by laying down on your back either on a couch or a bed. Bend the opposite knee to help support you better. Make sure that your knee is as straight as possible on the surgical knee. Be sure to bend your ankle so that your toes are pointed upward. Lift your leg about 15 inches. Hold it up for about 5 seconds. Lower your leg and repeat about 10-15 times. This will help strengthen your knee.

    You can choose to use a looped belt or a blue leg raise helper (you may have been given one at the hospital when you left the hospital). You can put the blue leg raise helper or the loop of a belt around the ball of your foot to help raise your leg if you choose to make it easier for you.

  • 02

    Knee Press Exercise

    You can do your knee press exercise by laying on a couch or a bed and place a tightly rolled towel under you surgical knee. Be sure that your leg with the surgical knee is as straight as possible with the rolled towel under your knee. Point your toes upward and using your knee muscles and not your buttock muscles, press your knee down into the towel. Hold it for about 10-15 seconds and relax. Repeat this knee press exercise 10-15 times.

    You should be seeing your knee tighten up as you are doing this exercise and not your buttock tightening up. You can try this first with your other knee to see how your knee tightens up when you press it down into the rolled up towel.

  • 03

    Heel Slides Exercise

    The heel slide exercise can be done by laying down on a couch or a bed. You can bend the opposite knee for support if you would like. Start off by having your surgical leg straight and pointing your toes upward toward the ceiling. Slide your heel towards your buttocks as far as you can get it and then slide it back down away from your buttocks to a straight position. Repeat this heel slide exercise 10-15 times.

    You can use a looped belt or a leg raise helper if you choose to. Loop the belt or the leg raiser helper through the ball of your foot and pull your foot towards your buttocks as far as you can. I have found that the blue leg raise helper really helps in bringing the heel closer to your buttocks easier.

  • 04

    Leg Raise Exercise

    You can do the leg raise exercise by sitting on a chair. Begin by sitting with your leg bent and then straighten your leg and raise your leg upward keeping it as straight as possible. Be sure to point your toes upward towards the ceiling as you are raising your leg upward. Hold your straight leg up and hold it for 10 seconds. You can then lower your leg and bend your knee and relax. Repeat this 10-15 times.

  • 05

    Knee Bend Exercise

    Begin doing your knee bend exercise by sitting in a chair with both legs bent at a comfortable position. Keep your surgical knee bent and pull your foot back as far as possible. Hold it there for 15-20 seconds and then relax. Repeat this exercise 6 times.

    You can use your opposite foot to push your surgical foot backward as far as possible if you choose. I have found that using my opposite foot really helps in getting a good pull in my surgical knee.


Final Thoughts

It is also recommended to use a stationary bike just for five minutes 2-3 times a day. I took this recommendation and borrowed a stationary bike from someone. I can't believe how much a stationary bike helped in loosen my knee and helped the range of motion in my knee.

You don't need an expensive stationary bike. You can ask family or friends if they have one that you can borrow for a few weeks. You can also check your local Good Will to see if they have one that you can purchase. You can check the internet and see if Craigslist has one that you can purchase from someone. You should be able to get a used stationary bike pretty reasonable.

Good luck in your recovery. I'm sure that if you keep up with these knee exercises, you will recover quickly. Be sure to push it to the limit for a quicker recovery.

Supporting Links

Comments

  • JennyHeart 5/18/2014 Flag This Comment

    My sister had 2 total knee replacements, and, I'm not sure she done all those things. This will be a great help to those individuals that have had knee replacements. H5

  • Marilynda 2/11/2013 Flag This Comment

    My friend is having knee replacement soon and I will pass along this list to help her recovery. Thanks

  • clarbear 2/1/2013 Flag This Comment

    Very helpful information on exercises for knee replacements. It is helpful for anyone who has knee replacements to do these exercises. Thanks for the share.

  • dashboardc33 1/19/2013 Flag This Comment

    Excellent article on exercises to do after a knee replacement. I will pass this info on to friends! H5 list!

  • hummingbirdee 1/18/2013 Flag This Comment

    Excellent resource for those who will need or have gone through this experience. I hope you are doing great!

  • goodselfme 1/18/2013 Flag This Comment

    Such useful and healthful information for those post surgery events of the knees. Good list!

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