Hi my favorite readers! I’ve received quite a few emails recently about exercising after a tkr. It seems there is some concern about how long one needs to continue PT exercises following their total knee replacement. I believe sharing some first-hand information is useful. Here is a previously published article which I have received numerous requests for:
Exercising is a part of my daily routine. I still do my tkr exercises and I’m 7 years post-surgery. The exercises may not be daily or on a scheduled basis. But, I still do them. I also enjoy doing isometrics throughout the day. There is no set time, place, or routine. I simply tighten various muscle groups and hold the tension for 6-8 seconds. Then I release and go on to the next muscle group. If you followed the same PT routine that I did, isometrics were the first tkr recuperation maneuvers we went through. It feels very good to do these maneuvers.
I have an exercise bike at home that I use whenever I feel like getting tortured. It’s particularly helpful when my tkr is stiffer than usual. Swimming is much more fun, but hey, you gotta do what you gotta do. Swimming doesn’t improve my tkr flexibility like an exercise bike does.
Luckily, there is a local YMCA nearby. I use that for swimming and water exercises (woohoo!) and the fitness machines. I dread those fitness machines. They’re just no fun. We always hear how one can change his or her attitude towards the positive and beneficial. Well…this is a perfect test case. As much as I look at these machines with disdain, they are improving my strength (or so I am convincing myself..).
A real-life story: Recently, one of my swimming buddies and I were discussing my dislike for fitness machines. She reassured me that I’ll eventually overcome that. She went on to regale the fact that she originally hated those machines. Now, she loves them. Hmmm…I’ll keep you posted.
Without any type of exercise, I would turn into a grumpy old lady in no time. I could easily join those aches and pains complaining sessions and start popping all kinds of pills. Instead, I choose physical activity. It’s only because I like to be charming as much as possible. 🙂
Hope this helps others going through the same thing.
AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through similar situations.
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