• Subscribe to the Bodyworks Newsletter, and get instant access to these 4 Ebooks today"

    Enter your first name and email address below for instant access!


Pre-op Exercises


Because of your hip or knee discomfort, you may have been living a less active life than you would like.

Having the joint replaced will correct the joint problem, but it will not strengthen the surrounding muscles - that is your job.

For as long as your joint has been painful, you will not have been using the surrounding muscles properly. You will probably have altered the way you walk, causing strain to surrounding joints.

When muscle are not used, they grow weak and fail to support the body properly. You need a regular exercise program to strengthen your muscles, so that they can support the new joint.

By strengthening these muscles prior to surgery, you increase your chances of a shorter and easier recovery, and you will ‘Hit the ground running.'

Ankle Pumps and Circles

Lie down on your back with a pillow to support your head. Bend both your ankles up, pulling your toes toward you, then bend both your ankles down, pointing your toes away from you. In addition, rotate your foot clockwise and counterclockwise, keeping your toes pointed toward the ceiling.

Thigh Squeezes

Lie down on your back with a pillow to support your head. Tighten the muscles in front of your thigh by pushing the back of your knees down onto the bed. Hold for five seconds.

Buttocks Squeezes

Lie down on your back with a pillow to support your head. Squeeze the muscles of your buttocks together. Tighten the muscles. Hold for five seconds.

Heel Slides

Lie down on your back with a pillow to support your head. Bend your knee by sliding your heel up toward your buttocks. Keep your heel on the bed. Keep your kneecap pointed toward the ceiling throughout the exercise. You may want to place a cookie sheet under your heel to help it slide more easily.

Leg Slides

Which knee is scheduled for joint replacement? That is called your "involved" side. Lie flat on your bed, and slide the involved leg out to the side, keeping your kneecap pointed toward the ceiling. Slide your leg back and return to the starting position.

Short Arc Quads

Lie on your back with a three-pound coffee can or rolled blanket under your involved knee (if your left knee will be operated on, use your left knee for this exercise). Straighten your knee. Hold for five seconds. The back of your knee should stay in contact with the can or blanket throughout the exercise.

Straight Leg Raises

Lie down on your back with a pillow to support your head. Bend your uninvolved leg. Keep your foot flat on the bed. Raise your involved leg about 12 inches, keeping your knee straight. Hold briefly. Progress to holding for five seconds.

Bed Mobility Exercise

Lie flat on your back. Rise up onto both elbows. Straighten your arms out behind you and come to a sitting position. Lower yourself down onto your elbows again, then lie flat.

Sitting Kicks

Sit in a sturdy chair. Lift your involved leg and straighten your knee as much as possible. Hold for five seconds. Return to the starting position and relax.

Chair Push Up

Sit on a sturdy chair with arms. Grasp the arms of the chair. Push down on the chair arms, straightening your elbows so that you raise your buttocks off the seat. Lower yourself slowly back into the chair. If your arms are weak at first, use your legs to help raise your buttocks off the chair.