How To Exercise After Hip Replacement Has Healed

Approximately six to nine months after total hip replacement, you may be ready to begin training using the new hip joint. 

Proceed gradually and follow the instructions of the surgeon and physiotherapist.

 Your new hip has some limitations. Exercise and strengthening can help you reap the benefits of improved mobility, strength, and flexibility in your new hip.

 

Step 1

Complete daily strengthening exercises to improve joint flexibility. While lying in bed, keep your feet straight out in front of you, with your knees straight.

Step 2

Flex the muscle above the right thigh and keep the knee straight. Lift your foot off the mattress and hold for 5-10 seconds or as long as possible. Repeat on the other side and alternate legs until your thighs are tired.

Step 3

Walk around the house, at the mall, or outside – if you live in a relatively flat environment – for 20-30 minutes, three or four days a week. Simply walking on your new hip increases strength, endurance, and flexibility.

Step 4

Use an exercise bike at the gym or home, if you have one, for 10-15 minutes a day to start. Move the seat to a comfortable level – your knees should barely bend with your foot touching the lowest pedal.

Step 5

Swim for 10-15 minutes a day if you have a pool. Once the hip is fully healed, swimming provides a no-effect aerobic workout that can help you move your hip through the full range of motion without the drag of gravity.

Step 6

Walk up and down the stairs every day. Hold firmly on a handrail and lift your good leg up to the first step. Follow up with the operative hip and leg to go up the next step. Remember the saying, “Up with the good, down with the bad.” You go down the stairs with the hip surgery and state of the art leg.

Warnings

  • You may not be able to participate in high-impact sports or jogging after hip replacement. Talk to your doctor.

Tips

  • Use assistive devices – such as a cane – as encouraged by your doctor. They provide stability during gentle exercise and remove hip strain while strengthening the muscles surrounding the new joint.
  • Pedaling the backward fixed bike may be more comfortable for you at first. Work gradually until you pedal forward.

Things you will need

  • Assistive products as prescribed, for example, a cane or walker.

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