Despite what you might think, exercising is important after knee surgery. It’s important so that your knee and leg don’t deteriorate from lack of physical activity; exercising your body will help it become stronger and heal faster.
The key thing here is that you should do your exercises in moderation and anytime you feel pain in your knee you should stop right away. Also, it won’t hurt to ask your ACL surgeon in Orem for advice. Here are some knee exercises to help with your recovery.
Knee exercises after surgery
A few days after your surgery you can start your routine (be sure that your doctor gives you the green light, though) with these three low intensity exercises:
- Heel slide – Sit on the floor with your legs outstretched. Bend your injured knee slowly while sliding your heel towards your buttocks. You don’t have to bend your knee so far that your heel touches your buttocks. Bend it to the point where it’s still comfortable for you then slowly lower it and go back to your original position.
- Quadriceps contraction – Sit on the floor with your injured leg outstretched and the other slightly bent. Use your hands to balance yourself. With your injured knee, contract your quadriceps while your leg is stationary.
- Knee flexion – Lie down on your stomach and straighten out your legs. Lift the heel of your injured knee and bend it until it touches your buttocks. Hold it for five seconds and bring it back to its original position.
You should do at least ten reps for each exercise, but if you feel any discomfort and pain you should stop right away.
Knee exercises when swelling subsides
After a few weeks the swelling in your injured knee will have started to subside and chances are it’s not as uncomfortable to move around. When you’re feeling like this you can start performing the exercises listed below to further strengthen your knee muscles.
- Passive knee extension – Get two chairs of equal height and face them towards each other. Allow a little distance between the two chairs. Sit down on one chair and rest the leg of your injured knee on the other. Let your leg relax; this will help stretch your hamstrings on your injured knee.
- Half squat – Stand up and use a sturdy table or chair to maintain your balance. Hold onto the table/chair with both of your hands and your feet should be shoulder’s width apart. When you’re ready bend your knees to lower yourself into a half squat. Hold that position for ten seconds and slowly return to your starting position. If you feel any pain while you’re in a half squat don’t continue with this exercise and consult your doctor.
- Heel raise – Use a chair to maintain your balance. Stand behind a chair and lift your whole body by tiptoeing. Hold that position for ten seconds and slowly lower yourself. Do as many as ten reps if you don’t feel any pain in your injured knee.
These are just some of the knee exercises you can do to strengthen your injured knee after an ACL surgery. Always practice caution when you’re exercising and if you feel any discomfort or pain you should refrain from continuing your exercises until your doctor tells you that it’s okay.