Can you..? Challenges to help you maintain independence
Struggling to get up and down from the floor?
The video at the bottom of this page shows one of the most important exercises that we can do as it can help us get up from the floor with ease. As we age the big muscles in our thighs tend to lose strength (particularly if we spend a lot of time sitting down), which puts us off doing things that require us to get down on the floor in case we can’t get back up again.
Think of all the times we need to be able to get down and up again; gardening is a great example where we need to kneel down to do planting and weeding, or cleaning floors or picking something up off the floor or even to get ourselves back up after a tumble.
This simple exercise may be challenging if you have got out of the habit of getting up and down from the floor so remember to have a chair at your side for support at first. It’s also a good idea to use a thin cushion or mat to protect your knees when kneeling.
- Step forward with one foot
- Lower yourself down to a kneeling position on one, then on both knees
- Place one foot out in front and push up to stand
- Then repeat the step, lower, kneel, step and stand sequence
- At first just do three on each leg and build up to 10 repetitions
Strong leg muscles are vitally important for everyday life, as you improve you will notice it easier to climb the stairs, get up and out of your chair more easily and this also improves your ability to stay steady on your feet for better balance.
If you have knee problems such as severe arthritis or have had a knee replacement then avoid kneeling down and focus instead on improving leg strength using resistance bands or doing the sit to stand instead.
Move It or Lose It
Continue to practice using a chair and keep up with the strengthening exercises. Great to be doing Pilates too and give yourself more time to regain strength. If you’re concerned and this is restricting any of your daily activities then ask to be referred back to physiotherapy for more advice.
Hi. I could do this on both sides easily before I had a hip replacement. Now I cannot do it on the operated side. My question is, should I continue to practise using a chair to help me to standing and will I be able to do it again unaided with time? (I was religious about doing all my pre- and post-op exercises and started pilates again after 12 weeks.) Thank you.
Jacqueline D Townsend
I find it hard to get that leg up into that position?
I've had a hip replacement and wonder what excersises I could do
I've had a hip replacement and wonder what excersizes are suitable for me