The activities typically performed during hip replacement rehabilitation include using a walker, cane or crutches; completing exercise routines recommended by a physical therapist; and doing low-impact fitness activities, such as swimming and riding a stationary bicycle, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Ankle pumps and ankle rotations are good postoperative exercises.
Most patients stay at a hospital for one to four days after a hip replacement surgery, states the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. The activities they need to accomplish during the hospital stay include getting in and out of bed, eating, drinking and using the bathroom on their own. They must also learn how to walk using an assistive device, climb a few stairs and perform several suggested home exercises.
Home recovery involves changing the wound dressing regularly, taking medications, elevating the leg, wearing compression stockings or applying ice to manage swelling, explains the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. It helps to rearrange home furniture to use an assistive device more easily, use a firm chair with a higher seat and put frequently used items nearby to avoid reaching up or bending down.
Physical therapists often suggest exercising for 20 to 30 minutes two to three times daily to improve a person's hip movement and strength, notes the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. Ankle pumps requires pushing the foot slowly up and down, while ankle rotations involve moving the ankle inward and outward away from the other foot.