The Best Hip Physical Therapy Stretches You’re Not Doing

Physical rehabilitation centers’ inpatient therapy is a great benefit to those who are recovering from a hip replacement. But this is only part of the overall picture. You must continue doing these exercises beyond inpatient therapy in order to achieve maximum benefit.

With help from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best hip physical therapy stretches. Are you adding these to your routine?

One quick note before you get started. Remember to review these stretches with your doctor or physical therapist at your physical therapy rehab centers.  He or she will be able to give you more detailed feedback on whether or not these are the right stretches for you.

  1. Ankle pumps and rotations

During an ankle pump exercise, you push your foot up and down slowly. This is a good exercise to begin immediately after surgery. You should do this exercise several times every five or ten minutes.

Ankle rotations involve moving your ankle inward toward your other foot and then outward. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends doing this five times in each direction for three or four sessions a day.

  1. Bed-supported knee bends

For this exercise, the key is to bend your knee while still keeping your heel on the bed. All you have to do is simply move your foot toward your buttocks. Be careful—don’t let your knee roll inward. Hold it for five to ten seconds before straightening it again.

Check with our therapists at the physical therapy rehabilitation centers about how often you should repeat the exercise. In general, you should do three or four sessions of ten knee bends every day.

  1. Abduction exercises

What does it mean to do an abduction exercise? In physical therapy, abduction is the movement of the leg away from the body. For this exercise, simply slide your leg to the side and then back. Again, you should do this ten times at each session for three or four sessions a day.

  1. Quadriceps exercises

The quadriceps could be considered your thigh muscles.  Essentially, what you must do is tighten this muscle and then try to straighten your knee. Hold this position for five to ten seconds. During a ten-minute period, try to do this exercise ten times, allowing one minute to rest before repeating.

Your physical therapist can give you further directions on how long you should continue this exercise, but you should stop when your thigh feels fatigued.

  1. Knee raises

This is a standing hip physical therapy exercise. In order to do standing exercises, you should use a chair to help keep your balance. Lift the leg that was operated on toward your chest. However, don’t raise your knee any higher than your waist. Hold this position for two or three seconds before putting the leg down. Repeat this exercise 10 times.

  1. Standing hip abduction

Standing straight, lift your leg to the side. When doing this exercise, be sure that your hip, knee and foot are facing forward.

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Adding an Elastic Tube to Your Exercises

As you gain strength, you may wish to implement the use of an elastic tube to help provide greater resistance and help with strength training.

However, don’t attempt these exercises until your doctor or physical therapist has indicated that it’s safe to do so.

Other Important Hip Physical Therapy Exercises

At our physical therapy rehab centers, we’ll also work with you on the following exercises that are vital to your successful recovery.


You’ll be using a walker or crutches when you begin, and at first, you may not be allowed to put all of your weight on the affected leg. Be sure to evenly balance your weight and walk as smoothly as possible.

Remember, there’s no need to hurry—recovery is a process. One of our physical therapists will work with you to help adjust the length of your step and the speed as needed. The goal is to get you to walk with an even pattern.


Another facet of hip physical therapy involves learning how to go up and come down stairs.

At first, you may not feel that you have the flexibility needed to climb and descend stairs. Don’t worry. We’ll work with you and follow your treatment plan to ensure that you’ll be ready to face the challenges ahead.

The key to climbing stairs is to realize that your good leg should always lead the way going up, but the leg that was operated on should lead going down.

Remember: for safety’s sake, you should not attempt to climb any step higher than seven inches. Always use the handrail and a crutch if needed.

Compassionate Care from Our Physical Therapy Rehabilitation Centers Inpatient Services

At Brook Stone, we are with you on your journey. We are here to cheer you on and to help you rise above the challenges presented by hip physical therapy. We’re all members of the same team, and we will treat you with the same dedication and care that we would if you were a member of our own family.

Do you need care at physical therapy rehab centers? We invite you to contact us at Brook Stone to see what makes us different from other facilities. We believe you’ll find a dedicated, caring team dedicated to providing the best care