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Can you..? Get up from the floor easily

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.

 

Comments (11)

  • 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.

    • 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.

  • I tried following the video. There is no way I can get up. What exercises do I need to do, to enable me to get up like you.

  • I am 68 years old, correct weight and quite fit & nearly always busy with DIY tasks for myself and others including plenty of gardening’
    I have just put a laminate floor down, only about 9 square meter; the getting up and down; measure, cut, lay etc. 100s of time I suppose; leaves me with very painful knees, mainly the muscle above the knees; ?quads?
    This is my main bone of contention with various activity including walking
    Perhaps this just normal for a man of my ‘years’?

    • Dear William

      It sounds as though you are very active and fit. However the repetitive action of kneeling and standing has obviously caused some inflammation and pain, which should settle in time. Now is a good time to start working on your leg strength, in particular the quads above your knees.

      Here’s 3 easy exercises for knees – seated leg raise, sit to stand and resistance band leg strengthener. Don’t be put off by the fact they are seated, it will allow you to strengthen without straining the muscles. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8klLOvNAKc

      For more exercises you could try our DVD No 3 which is uses resistance bands to strengthen and maintain muscle mass: https://www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/product/dvd-no-3/ – there’s a trailer for you to see if you think it’s appropriate.

      Then see if we have a class near you and call the instructor to see if it would be suitable for you: http://www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/classes

      All the best.
      Julie

  • Hi. I am 50 years old with carpal tunnel so difficult pushing up with hands but able to use my forearms to get up from kneeling. I have a really difficult time from sitting on the floor to getting my legs under me to be able to stand. I am guessing this is a combination of weak abdominal, back and leg muscles. Where do I start?

    • Dear Lesley

      Thanks for getting in touch, I’m sorry to hear you’re struggling with this and yes, it is most likely due to your muscles not being strong to give you the power to get up from the floor without using your hands.

      Are you able to get to one of our classes for some personal help? (https://www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/find-a-class/)
      Or could you join our online club so you can build up gradually to exercise every day? (www.moveitorloseitclub.co.uk/free-trial/)

      One of the best exercises you can do is the sit to stand which strengthens the thighs, core and glutes. Here’s some info and a video showing you the 30 seconds version, it’s quick and easy to do at home and can really improve your strength: https://www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/stand-up-for-the-nhs/

      Hope this helps.

    • Dear Julia

      Thanks for getting in touch, I’m sorry to hear you’re struggling with this exercise and about your knee pain. It may be due to arthritis or it could be due to your muscles not being strong to give you the power to get up from the floor without using your hands.

      Are you able to get to one of our classes for some personal help? You can find a class here – https://www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/find-a-class/
      Or could you join our online club so you can build up gradually to exercise every day? https://www.moveitorloseitclub.co.uk/free-trial/

      One of the best exercises you can do is the sit to stand which strengthens the thighs, core and glutes. Here’s some info and a video showing you the 30 seconds version, it’s quick and easy to do at home and can really improve your leg strength: https://www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/stand-up-for-the-nhs/

      I’d avoid doing any kneeling if your knees are painful and of course it’s always wise to get medical advice if your pain persists.

      All the best

      Julie

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