After undergoing surgery to the knee, hip, ankle, or foot, the leg muscles may become weak as a result of decreased movement. When this happens, legs may atrophy if allowed to remain inactive for a longer time. However, you must consult with your surgeon first before you can engage in any leg strengthening exercises. Strengthening exercises are important to obtain full functional mobility and recovery after an injury.
While there are tons of exercises that you can do to keep your entire body in shape, regaining strength on your legs is necessary because of mobility, particularly if you need it for your work. If you got the injury from a work-related accident, you must keep a positive attitude and focus on getting better. You should also start seeking compensation. According to Reck Law, injured workers can claim benefits even if they are part-time, seasonal, or temporary workers. Even non-U.S. citizens can file a claim. Once you have that sorted out, you can concentrate on regaining your strength.
Here are some of the exercises to strengthen your legs:
This exercise is an isometric movement to help increase the strength of your hips and leg muscles. You will notice that while tightening your gluteal muscles, no motion will occur at your hip joints.
While on your back, tighten the muscles of your gluteal area. Hold it tight for about five seconds before relaxing. Repeat the exercise for 10 to 15 reps. You can do the exercise several times a day.
Heel slides are useful for helping you regain your range of motion by stretching your thigh muscles. While on your back, bend your knees slowly simultaneously with the heel of your affected leg, moving it towards your gluteal area. Slide as far back as possible then hold it for five minutes. Slowly go back to your initial position, then repeat. Do the exercise for at least ten reps.
This exercise will help you build and maintain the strength of your thigh muscles. The action of the exercise sets the quadriceps muscles as you hold them tight. While on your back, press the end of your knee flat on the floor. Hold it for ten seconds before slowly releasing it. Do at least 10 to 12 reps of this exercise. This exercise is also essential to set your knee cap, particularly if you have patellofemoral stress syndrome (PFSS).
Short Arc Quad
After an injury or surgery to the quad muscles, the short arc quad exercise will help strengthen the area. This exercise helps in improving neuromuscular recruitment. Lie on your back with a ball under the knee, then slowly straighten your knee as you tighten your quad muscles. Hold it in position for three seconds before relaxing it. Do it 10 to 15 times.
Straight Leg Raises
SLRs are a simple exercise that has maximum benefits for strengthening injured legs. Lie on your back then lift your leg straight at least 12 inches off the floor. Hold it in position for 10 seconds before slowly lowering it. Make sure that your leg remains straight as you raise and lower it. Do the exercise 10 to 15 times. If you are comfortable doing it already, you may want to challenge yourself and add a two-pound weight on your ankle during the exercise. This exercise is also commonly done to check for any lumbar issues and nerve root irritation.
Undergoing a quick recovery after a work-related or other injury is necessary. You may want to be physically fit to deal with other issues about your injury, such as filing for your injury claim. The sooner you can strengthen your body, the faster your recovery and the sooner you can go back to your daily activities.