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Using Weights to Straighten a TKR

Some readers have asked me lately whether I used weights during my tkr recuperation. I have written articles about this before, but thought it was time to discuss it further. The answer is “yes, I have”. Weights were used in a variety of ways. Below is how I used weights to straighten my tkr.

One exercise involving weights was done by sitting in a firm chair. I’d have another firm chair directly in front of me, about three feet away. I’d extend my tkr leg onto the other chair. My tkr knee would be in the center portion of the separated chairs. Or, I’d sit on my sofa and extend my tkr leg onto my coffee table with the same space underneath my tkr knee.

Then, when my knee was as straight as it would be, I’d put a towel over it. I’d then put a two-pound ankle weight on top of the towel, directly on top of my tkr knee. OUCH! Sometimes that was a DOUBLE OUCH!! It needed to be done, however. I started with a two-pound weight, but gradually increased it to five pounds. And, I do mean gradually. I never did more than five pounds since I received great results with only five pounds.

Once the weight was on my tkr knee, I’d keep it on for about one to two minutes to start with. This would be increased to ten minutes (but only after about three months post-tkr surgery).

This is one way in which I used weights to help straighten my tkr leg during rehabilitation.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing.

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8 comments to Using Weights to Straighten a TKR

  • Carol

    That is exactly what my PT did to straighten my leg. And it worked.

  • Thanks for sharing your experience, Carol. It was a painful, but very beneficial, exercise. :) Keep in touch and good luck!

  • This is a common exercise we use in PT to help reduce the knee flexion contracture that will develop as osteoarthritis sets in. You make a good point to start slowly and gradually increase the time and weight under tension to prevent increased pain which will lead to non compliance. Getting your knee to fully extend is as important if not more to obtain a smooth gait or walking pattern.

  • Terri Ingram

    I am elated to read about this article. I really needed that understanding. Thank you so much!

  • Dave

    Surgery was 08/27/27 today is 12/18/13 and I have been back to work for three weeks, It feels and looks like I may have to go back to something like this. My knee seems to have gotten worse after stopping PT. Anyone else? They did this in PT for like 3 minutes with 3 pounds. I needed additional meds sometimes with this.

  • Hi Dave,
    Thanks for stopping by and posting your tkr comment.
    Personally, I still do PT exercises and it’s almost 6 years post-tkr. I was doing the maneuver discussed in this post months after my tkr.
    Keep in touch and good luck!

  • Dave

    I’m sorry for not explaining more. When I stated “PT” meaning Physical Therapy or a insurance paid therapy, so as to return to work, or for me a 2.0 -2.5 month exercise therapy where, there ok is required to get back to work. Part of therapy was the 3 minute weight above my ankle for 3 minute time period. Fifty or so, minutes of other exersises were also normal. Leg lifts, then leg straightening, then leg push downs, running 5 minutes, wall back push ups, and balancing excersises. My spelling is not the best. Dave

  • Hi Dave,
    Thanks for coming back and leaving your tkr comment explanation. I thought that’s what you meant, but wasn’t sure. Your clarification is perfect. :)
    Happy Holidays!
    Keep in touch and good luck!

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