Getting the knee back to full range of motion is important following ACl surgery. Once you achieve full range of motion after surgery you will be able to progress through other physio exercises that can greatly speed up your return to activity. It is for this reason that full range of motion within the first few weeks can be the difference between a successful ACL surgery recovery or not. These are the 5 most helpful exercises at restoring a full range of motion in your knee. These have helped me get to 130 degree range of motion by the end of week 2.
Top 5 Knee Range of Motion Exercises After ACL Surgery
Knee Range of Motion Exercise 1 – Heel Prop
Knee Range of Motion Exercise 2 – Heel Slides
Heel slides are good at both increasing your range of motion as well as increasing your knees strength. In the same position as the Heel Prop, lying on your back, remove the “prop” from under your heel so your leg is lying flat on the ground. With your leg flat on the ground slide your heel towards your but. This will stregthen your hamstring muscles as well as improve your range of motion.
Knee Range of Motion Exercise 3 – Prone Knee Flexion
Range of Motion Exercise 3 – Prone Knee Flexion
Roll over onto your stomach and bend your knee moving your heel as close to your butt as possible. Again this exercise will improve your hamstrings strength and your knees range of motion.
Knee Range of Motion Exercise 4 – Bike Pendulums
While sitting in a chair make ½ to full circles with no resistance. This will improve your range of motion and muscle communication.
Knee Range of Motion Exercise 5 – Quad Sets
Quad sets are when you place something, pillow or towel, under your knee and then flex your quad to push your knee into the towel or pillow. This increases the strength in your knee and helps get your knee back to 0 degrees range of motion.
Additional tip to improve range of motion - sleep with nothing under your knee and on your back. The bed will bend enough to support the knee and having a slow, very gentle, extension overnight will grealy decrease the length of time it will take to get full extension in your knee.
The Top 5 At Home Exercises
I did that helped get me walking 4 days after surgery
Click Here to see the exercises