Navigating Total Knee Replacement: Is it safe to kneel?

One of the most frequent messages I hear from my clients is:

“I had a total knee replacement and now I can’t kneel.”

The ability to kneel is key to being able to get up off the ground if you fall.

What is a total knee replacement?

Knee replacements typically occur when functional or daily living is affected, such as walking to the stores, going up and down stairs, or other activities of daily living. The operation consists of replacing the surfaces of both the the femur (thigh bone) and the tibia (shin bone). Sometimes the surface of the kneecap (or patella) It is also replaced.

The nature of knee replacement recovery is very individual. The first six weeks after surgery can be characterized by significant pain, making reducing inflammation and improving range of motion (ROM) and function the primary focus. It is unfortunate that when they experience more pain it is the window of opportunity to gain reach.

Strength and conditioning plays an important role and must adhere to personalized principles. A physical therapist should provide recovery exercises before discharge.

So, is kneeling contraindicated after surgery?

Kneeling is not contraindicated.

There is currently there is no evidence that there is some clinical reason why someone who has had a total knee replacement should not kneel on the replaced knee. However, there are reasons why they might choose not to, including

  • knee pain/discomfort
  • numbness
  • fear of damaging the prosthesis
  • comorbidities

Typically, people who have difficulty kneeling before surgery will be the ones who have difficulty kneeling after surgery.

If someone is having difficulty kneeling, it is important to approach them with compassion and use techniques to encourage them to kneel gradually, perhaps starting by kneeling on all fours in bed. Alternatively, patients can stand next to a chair, place the affected knee on the seat, and gradually increase the load over time.

Other progressions that could be used

  1. Kneel on the couch with a pillow under your knees.
  2. Kneel on the couch without a pillow under your knees.
  3. Kneel on the sofa cushion on the floor.
  4. Kneel on the couch with a pillow under your knee.
  5. Knee on the floor with a towel under the knee.
  6. Kneel on the carpeted floor without a pillow.

The goal is to slowly increase the amount of time you kneel and change surfaces from soft to hard. Everyone has their own recovery schedule, so there’s no need to rush, just move forward when you think you’re ready.

NHS tips and exercises for after total knee replacement

The charge Navigating Total Knee Replacement: Is It Safe to Kneel? appeared first on Fitness for life.

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