Once you return home after knee surgery, it is when your recovery officially starts. You need to start performing muscle strengthening exercises to build up strength that was lost due to injury. Not only that, you will also need to regain your full range of motion in the shortest possible time to eliminate any possible complications. It will be difficult initially as you have lost most of the strength previously. Recovery is a long and tedious process that needs to adhere to a schedule religiously. Deviating from it can possibly cause more harm. Rushing through it will also cause more harm than good. So what are some of the simple home exercises that you can do to help you out?
Ankle pumps will help to increase ankle dorsiflexion and help build up the shin muscles. Bend your ankles upwards and pull the toes towards you and subsequently away from you. Hold in each position for 10 seconds and repeat for 3 sets of 10 each time. Aim to perform it 3 times daily.
Assisted leg extension
You will need to regain your full range of motion in the shortest possible time. It is also the top priority post surgery. Lie on your stomach with your leg in full extension. Place you good leg below the injured leg and slowly bring it up. Try to bring it beyond the point of pain and hold in the position for 10 seconds. Slowly bring down both legs and repeat. You should try to do this exercise throughout the day whenever possible.
Seated leg extension
This is also another knee flexion exercise that helps to regain range of motion. Sit down on a chair with a back support. Slowly bend your injured knee back to the point of pain and hold for 10 seconds. Slowly return back to the starting point and repeat. Also when possible, try to perform this exercise throughout the day.
Seated leg kicks
Sit down on a chair with a back support. Stretch out your injured knee as much as you can and hold in the position for 10 seconds. Slowly bring back to the starting position and repeat. This exercise will also help to reduce any scarring in the knees and improve the range of motion.
Sit down at the edge of your beg with your legs on the floor. Try to tighten the quad muscles and straighten your legs concurrently. You should be able to feel your quad muscles contracting. Hold it for 10 seconds and relax. Aim to perform at least 100 sets of this exercise daily as it can help to strengthen and firm up the quad muscles to help shield some of the load from your knee.
Recovery from knee surgery is a slow and tedious process. However, do not feel disheartened and aim to do it slow and steady. Do not be frustrated by it and try to rush through it. It will do more harm than good.