Knee Exercises for Total Knee Replacement. Try These Pre-Op and Post-Op

All right, hey guys. What’s up? It’s Stephen Dunn with CORE Therapy and Pilates and today I’m going to do a couple quick little knee exercises.

I have a client that’s going in for a knee replacement and these are the knee exercises I want her doing in preparation for the knee replacement. As well as soon as she has the knee replacement, start doing as soon as she’s post-op. So I want to go over those real quick, a couple little simple knee exercises. All you are going to need is a towel rolled up and we’re going to use a foam roller.

So the first one is actually called a quad set. A quad set is you’re going to have your towel rolled up underneath the knee right here. You can be laying down or sitting up like I am. You’re going to tighten the quadricep muscle here on the top and drive that towel down, you’re pushing your knee down into the towel. Okay, it’s called an isometric exercise. So you push down, hold it for five seconds and relax. Push down, hold it for five seconds and relax. So that’s the first one, the quad set.

The second one is called a hamstring set. We’re going to get your leg into this position and then it’s like you’re pulling your leg towards you using your hamstring, underneath here. You can do it on the edge of the table or just digging into the ground where the ground is not going to let it move towards you. So you pull the heel towards you. The heel doesn’t move hold for five seconds and relax. Hold five seconds and relax. That’s a hamstring set.

Next one called the short-arc quad and that’s with the foam roll underneath your knee. We’re going to lay down on our back for this one and again you can be on your back for the other two as well. Now in this position with the foam roller under the knee we’re going to just lift the foot, knee stays down. You’re tightening the quadricep, lifting the foot. Hold for five seconds and relax, boom and relax.

Do about twenty reps of all of these.

The next one is to take the foam roller out, bending one leg up the other leg stays straight. Do a quad set first and then you lift the leg up even with the other knee. That’s going to be on your exhale as you lift, inhale as you lower. (exhaling as leg lifts) So that’s a straight leg raise.

The last one we’re going to do is sitting on the edge of the table or the edge of the chair and then just straightening that knee out. The long arc quad. It’s just going to be sitting on the chair and straightening the leg doing that isometric hold for five seconds at the end and lowering. Lifting, holding five seconds and lower.

So those are a few little simple knee exercises to do pre-surgery, post-surgery. If you’re having knee pain, knee stiffness those are some basic things that you can work on. So I just want to share that with you today and I hope you’re having a fantastic day and thanks for everyone who hopped on and I’ll see y’all soon, bye now.

Call 512.215.4227 to chat with a client specialist about your knee…


Physical Therapist and Occupational Therapist at CORE Therapy and Pilates
Andy is passionate about providing a holistic approach to help people in Austin stay active and fit. He has a special interest in helping musicians perform more freely and comfortably. To better serve his patients, he acquired his manual therapy certification (MTC) through USAHS in 2018, and he is in the process of becoming a certified hand therapist. He also completed his Comprehensive Pilates and pre-/post-natal training through Core Pilates NYC, and became a certified classical Pilates instructor in 2019.