Following your injury it is important to keep the knee moving. Performing the following exercises will prevent stiffness and weakness developing.
Start by sitting upright on a firm surface with your back supported and legs straight. You should be warm and comfortable.
1. Pull your foot up at the ankle so that your toes point up to the ceiling. Tense your thigh muscle and push your knee down onto the bed.
Keep pushing your knee down and tensing your thigh whilst you count to five.
2. Place a rolled up towel underneath your knee. Press your knee down and lift your heel up until your leg is straight. Hold your leg straight for a count of five and then lower your heel gently. You can make your thigh muscles work harder by placing a weight over your ankle and increasing the weight progressively.
3. Remove the towel from underneath the knee and bend the knee as far as it will comfortably go. If you can reach, gently hug the knee towards your chest. Straighten your leg.
4. Pull your foot up at the ankle so that your toes point up to the ceiling. Tense your thigh muscle and push your knee down onto the bed. Lift your straight leg approximately 4” from the bed. Keep it completely straight by bracing your knee back, and hold it straight in the air for a count of five. Keeping the leg straight lower it slowly back to the bed or floor. Let your leg relax completely for a few seconds. Use a weight over the ankle to make the muscles work harder.
5. This exercise can be done when you are sitting in a chair or on the edge of the bed, again comfortably supported. Keeping your knee on the chair, lift your foot up so that your leg is straight. Hold for a count of 5 - then lower gently back and rest a few seconds.
The exercises should be done at least three times daily. Start with 2 sets of 10 of each exercise; build up to 3 sets of 10 and then increase the weight gradually, as advised by your physiotherapist.