Safe Pilates Exercise for Hip Replacements

Updated February 21, 2017

Getting a hip replacement can be difficult. The pain that comes after any surgery is hard to live through, but walking every day on a new hip is even more difficult. Luckily, many Pilates exercises can help treat your hip pain. Pilates exercises work your hips, legs, and abdominal muscles. These should be done gradually and increase in regularity and intensity as your hip heels.

Side Kicks

This exercise can be done in a standing or lying position. If standing, keep legs hip width apart. Breathe deeply and relax. Slowly lift your right leg away from your body. You shouldn't move it more than about 45 degrees. Hold it for at least five seconds, but no more than 10. Only hold it as long as you feel comfortable. Slowly lower your leg. Do this 8 to 10 times for each leg. If you are still having difficulty, lie down. Rest a pillow between your legs to keep them slightly apart. Once you feel comfortable doing this regularly, add small ankle weights. These sidekicks strengthen the hip joint and balance your core muscles.

Chair Stands

Chair stands are useful for those who don't have the strength to stand for long periods. Start by sitting in a chair. The chair should be comfortable as you will be in it for awhile. Using the arms of the chair, slowly stand upright. Stand for 5 to 10 seconds, and then lower yourself slowly to a seated position. Sit for no more than five seconds and then stand up again. Try to do at least 10 of these a day, but don't force yourself. Simply do as many as you can. If you can't do all 10 at once, simply try doing them throughout the day. This exercise will work your new hip slowly but carefully.

Toe and Heel Raises

Toe and heel raises can help build up the strength in your calves and hips after your replacement surgery. A heel raise requires you to stand on the edge of a step. Hold onto a wall, guard rail, or cane for support. Each heel should hang over the edge of the step slightly. Slowly raise the heel of your left leg until you are on your toes. Hold this pose for five seconds and then lower. Do the same with your left leg. Do 10 for each leg. Toe raises are similar to heel raises except done in reverse. Hang your toes off the front of the step and slowly shift your weight into your heels as you raise your toes. Hold for five seconds, lower, and repeat up to 10 times. Do the same for the opposite leg.

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About the Author

Eric Benac began writing professionally in 2001. After working as an editor at Alpena Community College in Michigan and receiving his Associate of Journalism, he received a Bachelor of Science in English and a Master of Arts in writing from Northern Michigan University in Marquette.