Pre-Hip Replacement: Exercises for the Legs

The following exercises do more than build strength. You’ll also use them after surgery to help speed your recovery. Ask your physical therapist (PT) or surgeon if you should exercise one or both legs. You may also be given special instructions. And unless you’re told otherwise, try to do each exercise at least 5 to 10 times, 2 times a day.

Abduction/adduction

Legs from knee down showing abduction/adduction exercise.

  • Lie in bed with your feet slightly apart. Keeping your knee and foot pointing toward the ceiling, slowly slide your leg out to the side.

  • Slide your leg back to its original position without crossing the midline of your body.

Heel slides

Leg from knee down showing heel slides.

  • Lie down or sit with your legs stretched out in front of you.

  • Slide your heel toward your buttocks while keeping it on the bed. Placing a plastic bag or cookie sheet under the heel can help it slide more easily.

  • Move it as far as you comfortably can. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds, then slide your heel back.

Gluteal sets

Leg from waist down showing gluteal sets.

  • Squeeze your buttocks together tightly.

  • Your hips will rise slightly off the bed. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds, then release.



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