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Activities for Post-Surgery Recovery

Activities for Post-Surgery Recovery

Supporting Your Recovery With Movement

After having surgery, it's important to take things easy and not overdo it. But that doesn't mean you have to be completely inactive. In fact, some light movement and stretching can actually help with your recovery.

Here are a few activities for post-surgery recovery that your doctor may recommend:

Ankle Pumps

Following surgery, ankle pumps can help you focus on improving your circulation. While sitting or lying down, tap your foot up and down, making sure not to point your toe. This helps improve circulation and prevents blood clots from forming.

Knee Bends

Knee bends cause your quadriceps, glutes, and calf muscles to contract to build strength in your legs. You can do knee bends while lying down or sitting in a chair. To start this movement, slowly bend your knee, then straighten it again.

Heel Slides

Heel slides are a simple movement that increases mobility in the lower extremity. To complete this movement, lay(?) on your back with your legs extended, bend one knee and slide your heel upward toward your buttocks, keeping your other leg straight. Then, slide it back down again.

Hip Abduction

Repeated hip abduction can help build muscle in your glutes — but it may also help restore strength and reduce pain in your knees and back. For this motion, lie on your side and raise your leg up, keeping your knee straight.

Leg Extension

Leg extensions help to strengthen your upper legs. To start this exercise, sit in a chair with your feet flat on the floor, then straighten one leg out in front of you by extending your knee, then bend it back again and rest your foot on the floor.

Speak With Your Doctor

Following these simple guidelines may help with a successful surgical recovery.

However, remember that it's important not to overdo it. After your surgery, your surgeon and physical therapist will make recommendations for what is right for you and what exercises you’re cleared for.

Start with just a few repetitions of each activity and build up as you feel comfortable. And always listen to your body – if something hurts, stop doing it.

Partners in Your Recovery

At St. John's Health, our surgical team aims for the best possible recovery for each of our patients. We’re here to support you before, during, and after your operation.

For any questions regarding pre-operative or post-operative care, visit our website.