Post-Hip Replacement Surgery Exercises for Seniors

older man exercise

Hip pain is a common problem among seniors, usually caused by injury, illness, or arthritis. Since it limits mobility, interferes with routine, and negatively impacts the quality of life, getting hip replacement surgery is essential. It is a safe and effective procedure that restores movement, boosts independence, and enhances overall health.

If your senior loved one just underwent a hip replacement, they might experience swelling, pain, and discomfort. An exercise program can help them move around easier and get back to doing activities they enjoy, like walking and slow dancing. Learn more about the importance of exercising post-surgery and the suggested basic hip exercises for your elderly friend or family member:

Why Is Physical Exercise After Hip Replacement Surgery Important?

A hip replacement eases pain, but exercising after surgery is key to a successful recovery. Getting your loved one’s body moving 2-3 times every day helps increase their flexibility, reduce their stiffness, prevent blood clots, and strengthen their muscles. 

What Are the Suggested Basic Hip Exercises After Surgery?

The doctor will give your senior loved one exercise instructions by themselves or in the comfort of their own home. Here are some basics that can be performed after surgery and while lying in bed:


Lift both knees alternately to waist height in a stationary march. This exercise must be performed for a total of 20 repetitions thrice or four times every day. If your loved one has trouble lifting their knees, let them use a table or a kitchen counter for balance support.

Standing hip abduction

Lift legs out to the side while keeping the hip, knees, and feet pointing straight forward and the body straight. Slowly lower the leg and place the foot back on the floor. Remind your loved one to do this exercise for ten repetitions 3-4 times a day.

Ankle pumps

To begin ankle pumps, slowly lift the foot up and down, then let your elderly friend or family member repeat this exercise every five or ten minutes. This exercise can be performed immediately after surgery until complete recovery.

Heel slides

Glide the foot toward the buttocks, slowly bend the knee up, slide the foot away from the buttocks to straighten the leg gently, then relax. Encourage your loved one to repeat the exercise for 30 repetitions. Remind them not to bend their hip more than 90 degrees and rest when necessary.

Functional exercises

While formal rehabilitation is generally often completed within six months, functional limitations may persist for more than a year. Because of this, the doctor may suggest functional exercises, which are physical exercises that maintain strength and range of motion after finishing rehabilitation. They involve pulling, pushing, and squatting. They are ideal if your loved one is soon returning to work after surgery. 


Exercises are crucial in your loved one’s recovery after hip replacement surgery. Make sure they make time and encourage them to be motivated and disciplined to do these exercises to make their healing process faster and easier. If you need further guidance on inspiring your elderly family member or friend to stay active after treatment, consider seeking help from a home health care agency like ours.

At Bridge Home Health and Hospice, our home health professionals care for your loved ones as if they were our family through licensed clinical support. We offer an orthopedic program for their safe and comfortable recovery and rehabilitation at home. In addition, we provide hospice care, wound care, and more. Book an appointment today!