Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine



I'm going to have a hip joint replacement this summer. I plan to use my own pool to exercise afterward. What exercises do you recommend?


Studies show that exercise should begin before the operation. The more fit you are, the faster your recovery. Hip strength before surgery is a way to predict how long you’ll be in the hospital. The greater the hip strength, the shorter the hospital stay (and vice versa). Since you know this will take place this summer, start as early as possible. Each exercise session should include a warm up of about five minutes. To do this, walk in the water with the water level at belly button level. Spend the next five minutes stretching your warmed up muscles. Water cycling, running in the water, and using weights in the water work well to strengthen muscles. Include both the arms and legs. This will prepare you for getting in and out of bed after the operation. Consult with your doctor before starting any exercise program. It's often a good idea to work under the supervision of a physical therapist. In this way, you’ll find the right exercise program for you and prevent any problems after the operation. Helen J. Gilbey, PhD, et al. Exercise Improves Early Functional Recovery After Total Hip Arthroplasty. In Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research. March 2003. Vol. 408. Pp. 193-200.

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