I had total left knee replacement four and a half months ago (due to age and an old injury). Two weeks ago I began walking a mile a day very successfully. Half the mile is straight down the hill and the other half is back up. Am I risking too much wear & tear on the old knee? Would it be safer to walk a flat mile? I like the hilly mile because I get a good cardio workout at same time. I am 63 and in good shape, but have about l5 more pounds to drop.
Exercise After Knee Surgery
I would certainly discuss this with the doctor who replaced your first knee. It’s amazing how little we ask of our doctors when they can often be the best source of information – give him or her a call!
What you are asking is if the “good” knee will be harmed by the uphill or downhill walking. Recent research I have seen suggests that moderate activity is not a causal factor in osteoarthtritis and in fact increases the joints’ ability to bear weight. However, I would be attuned to your body as you walk these hills – you could injure your knee if you land too forcefully or if you fall or twist your knee coming downhill. Injury can lead to osteoarthritic conditions. Also, be sure to do some strengthening exercises to build up the muscles around the knee and the quadriceps. That will make the hills feel easier and will help to protect the knee from stress. Again, ask your doctor or physical therapist for the best exercises. They should be able to give you pictures and demonstrate how to do them correctly!