Whether you are a professional athlete, play tennis occasionally, or jog regularly, the ligaments in your body experience a great deal of stress. The anterior cruciate ligament is one of the most common ligaments injured. Also known as the ACL, tearing this ligament cause extreme pain and a loss of mobility.

Thankfully, repairing a torn ACL is possible. Unfortunately, surgical repair of a torn ACL is invasive and timely. Rehabilitation will involve rest for the first two weeks after surgery before implementing physical therapy that can last up to 6 months. With these exercises and your physical therapist's help, you can improve your recovery after having ACL surgery.

Knee Extension

Straightening your leg is painful and almost impossible with a torn ACL, but this simple movement can also be difficult after surgeons reconstruct the ligament. Completing knee extension exercises during your recovery can strengthen your knee joint and connecting ligaments.

You can complete this exercise standing up or sitting down. The goal is to bend and extend the knee, holding each position in place for a few seconds at a time. Complete multiple times per day, documenting the level of pain and stiffness that you feel. Each day, the knee extension should be easier and less painful.

Groin Stretch

Stretching the adductor muscles of the thigh, since these muscles are connected to your knee's ACL, is also a great exercise to improve endurance and flexibility after your surgery.

Sit on the floor and spread your legs out in front of you as far apart from one another as possible. Lean your upper torso forward and down onto your lap as far as possible. Hold this position for 20 to 30 seconds before releasing. Repeat a few times per day.

Calf Raise

Your ACL is connected to all the muscles in your legs, including the calf muscles. During your recovery, these muscles may become stiff and tense, so conducting a few exercises to improve flexibility and strength is wise.

Stand on a stepping block or exercise step. Gently rise up on your toes and hold the position in place for 10 seconds. Then, lower yourself carefully back down. Repeat the exercises until you are able to rise up and down in steady, swift motions without any pain or discomfort.

The calf raises will work out the calf muscles while building up the strength of your restored ACL.

With proper recovery, reconstruction surgery is an effective option for patients with torn ACLs. By following your doctor's and physical therapist's orders, you can recover from the surgery in an efficient and successful manner. For more information, contact local professionals like Advanced Physical Therapy.