ACL physical therapy exercises – How to exercise at home

ACL physical therapy exercises are almost essential if you want to get back on both your feel after tearing or damaging your anterior cruciate ligament. These ACL physical therapy exercises help in the healing process while preventing any further damage to the ligament during post operative care if you have undergone surgery as part of the treatment. While some cases of anterior cruciate ligament tears can be treated without the use of surgery, the fact remains that ACL physical therapy exercises are a must in either case. The ACL physical therapy exercises must be performed under the guidance of a trained physiotherapist so that the ligament is not subjected to pressure levels that the damaged ligament cannot take. There are specific protocols for each stage of exercise and goals are set for each stage that should be achieved. While there are specific time periods assigned to each stage, it is only when one reaches the goals of the first stage that the patient is graduated to the next stage that comprises of the next level of exercises. The reason why a trained professional is required to follow such a protocol is simple. It is only these trained professionals that are aware of the exact correct manner in which the exercises should be done to ensure that the angle and pressure applied is accurate and adequate for faster recovery. While the exercises listed below may seem extremely simple, it is important to understand that a damaged ligament needs far more care than the one that can be provided by an untrained person.

Quads
ACL physical therapy exercises that include quads are the most common and help build the strength of the muscle on the top of the thigh. They help in movement of the knee as the stages of the ACL physical therapy exercises progress. Lie on the floor mat with the leg straight and tighten the quadriceps and hold the position. The tension can be released slowly and these ACL physical therapy exercises need to be performed at least 5 times.

Heel slides
These ACL physical therapy exercises help in movement of the knee joint and are done only when one is comfortable moving the knee joint. The exercise involves lying on the exercise mat with the injured leg straight and slowly moving the heel to the buttocks. Don’t pull your heel closer till the time it begins to feel slightly uncomfortable. Return to the original position and repeat the exercise 5 times.

Glute and bridges
The glute exercises help in strengthening and fortifying the muscles of the buttocks. These muscles are important in the rotational movement of the leg. To do the exercise lie on your back and prop yourself on your elbows. Squeeze your glutes and hold them in that position for about 5 seconds. Release slowly. Bridges are other ACL physical therapy exercises that also help in strengthening the glutes over time.