7 Strengthening Exercises to Prepare for a Total Knee Replacement | Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine

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7 Strengthening Exercises to Prepare for a Total Knee Replacement

7 Strengthening Exercises to Prepare for a Total Knee Replacement

The more a patient physically prepares for their total knee replacement, the easier their recovery and rehabilitation process will be after the procedure. Here are seven strengthening exercises to begin — with physician approval — in the months and weeks prior to your total knee replacement surgery. 

  1. Seated Leg Extensions 

Improve range of motion and quadricep strength by following these steps: 

  • Sitting in a chair, place both feet flat on the floor. 
  • Raise the injured leg, extending it until the knee is straightened. 
  • Pause for three to five seconds. 
  • Slowly lower the leg. 
  • Repeat 10 to 20 times. 
  1. Thigh Squeezes 

Strengthen the muscles above the knee with the following exercise:

  • Lie facing up with both legs straight on the floor. 
  • Push the backside of the injured knee down toward the floor, engaging the thigh muscle. 
  • Hold for three to five seconds, and then relax.  
  • Repeat 10 to 20 times. 
  1. Heel Slides 

Nurture and maintain a healthy range of knee motion by repeating these steps: 

  • Lie facing up with both legs flat on the floor.
  • Slowly bend the injured knee, sliding the heel inward toward the rest of the body.
  • Once the knee is bent as far as comfortably possible, pause for three to five seconds. 
  • Repeat 10 to 15 times. 
  1. Knee Bends 

Preserve and foster fluid knee mobility with the following exercise: 

  • Sit in a chair and bend the injured knee back as far as comfortably possible. 
  • Pause for three to five seconds. 
  • Slowly return the leg to its original position.  
  • Repeat 10 to 20 times. 
  1. Chair Pushups 

Train the triceps for post-surgery support with this seated activity: 

  • Sit in an armchair. 
  • Grabbing both arms of the chair, push down to rise out of the seat.   
  • Pause for two to three seconds.  
  • Slowly lower back to a seated position. 
  • Repeat five to 10 times. 
  1. Straight Leg Raises 

Engage and strengthen the quadricep muscles with this lower body move:

  • Lie facing up, keeping the leg with the injured knee straight on the floor. 
  • Bend the other leg so its foot is pressing flat against the floor.  
  • Engage the thigh of the injured leg and slowly raise the leg, maintaining a straight position. 
  • Once the injured leg reaches the same height as the bent knee, pause for two to three seconds. 
  • Release and slowly lower the leg. 
  • Repeat 10 to 15 times.  
  1. Walking or Riding a Bike 

Engage multiple leg muscles and promote knee mobility with the following activities:  

  • Cycle using low resistance on a recumbent bicycle or riding on a flat, smooth surface outside.
  • Enjoy leisurely walks on terrain with minimal or no incline. 

Total Knee Replacement Preparation in St. Augustine 

The proper pre-op routine looks different for every patient. At Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine, our diverse team of orthopaedists, sports medicine specialists, and physical therapists work together to create a preparative and rehabilitative plan specific for your total knee replacement. Schedule your appointment by completing our online request form or calling 904-825-0540.

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