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Hip Operations

Exercises before and after that can speed up the route to recovery

Problems regarding weight loss

A total or partial hip replacement operation involves the replacement of the damaged part of your hip joint with artificial components in order to increase mobility and reduce pain in the joint.

If you suffer from hip problems you may have found it painful to exercise, and consequently have piled on a few pounds. Aside from the obvious disadvantage of being overweight and unfit, excess weight may dissuade consultants from putting you forward for a hip operation, the very procedure that will enable you to exercise and lose weight. A real catch-22 situation!

Pre-op exercise options

If you do need to lose weight in order to be put forward for a hip replacement operation you should reduce your calorie intake and look for pain-free exercise options:

  • Because of a reduction in strength and stability the affected hip will be reluctant to move more initially. If you are able to walk pain-free, make this the starting point for your exercise. Walk daily for up to 1 hour, until your fitness or the onset of pain stops you, whichever comes first. Just DON'T exercise through pain.
  • Strength training is a fantastic option because activating muscle tissue burns calories and stops your metabolic rate from dropping (from a calorie reduced diet). There are limitless ways to target your upper body muscles and core muscles without involving your hip.
  • It's vital that you strengthen the musculature around your hip area prior to surgery. This speeds up your recovery and enhances the effectiveness of the replacement. You'll require specialist advice and programming to ensure you do the appropriate exercises and don't aggravate the hip. Ask a fitness professional for advice.

Post-op exercise

After a hip operation it takes several weeks or even months to regain mobility. During this time it's important to eat well and focus on exercises that don't stress the hip area. These include:

  • Walking and strength training, as explained above
  • Core and balance training involving the use of a gym ball. This kind of training will strengthen your hip replacement and ensure long-term protection

As you become more mobile following the operation build up the amount of exercise you do. As you activate more muscles, your body will get stronger and your hip joint will be better supported.

Hip replacement operations have a high success rate if the patient is a healthy weight and takes good care of the replacement joint after surgery. So a dodgy hip joint shouldn't stop you from leading a healthy active lifestyle!

You are advised to seek medical advice before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle with an aim of weight loss. This website and the content provided should not be used by persons under 18, by pregnant or nursing women, or individuals with any type of health condition, except under the direct supervision of a qualified medical professional. The information contained in these articles, and elsewhere on this website, is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only, and is not intended to replace, and does not constitute legal, professional, medical or healthcare advice or diagnosis and may not be used for such purposes. Continue...

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