What exercises can I do after a hip replacement?

If you have had a hip replacement or are considering one to ease your hip pain, you might be wondering what’s next? When can I return to an active lifestyle and what activities can I do after hip replacement surgery?

Regular exercise is important for patients who have undergone hip replacement surgery, no matter your age. Exercise is key to reducing the risk of obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and osteoporosis. It’s also an important way to strengthen the muscles around your hip and improve your cardiovascular fitness.

But what exercises can you safely do without damaging your hip joint?

The first week

After your surgery your physiotherapist will give you specific therapeutic exercises to do to support your recovery. These will be focused on helping you to regain the motion, strength and overall function of your new hip. The exercises should be done in short bursts, but regularly throughout the day.

Weeks one to six

During the first week to six weeks after surgery, the exercises will focus on strengthening your hip muscles and rebuilding balance. Walking, step-ups, mini-squats, stationary bikes and upper body cycling are common during this phase.

Weeks six to twelve

The next phase continues with similar exercises with the addition of strap-on ankle cuff weights or elastic bands for added resistance. Exercises might also include treadmill or pool walking.

Week twelve onwards

After 12-16 weeks, your surgeon and physiotherapist might give you the go-ahead to participate in low-impact sports and activities. Walking and swimming (excluding breaststroke) are encouraged, as are functional exercises such as pulling, pushing and squatting. You should choose activities that put less stress on your hip joint, such as golf, biking, gardening and light tennis, over activities that put strain on your new hip joint, such as squash, jogging and skiing.

Your surgeon will provide you with a guide on the activities you can and can’t do following your hip replacement based on your age and overall health. Taking care of your new hip will help to prevent the new joint from dislocating and ensure proper healing.

One of Newcastle and the Hunter Valley’s top Orthopaedic Surgeons, Dr Stuart MacKenzie has created a free guide to help you better understand the procedure involved and the recovery process from a hip replacement.

3 Aug 2018

Published by Default Admin

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