Hip Arthroscopy Rehabilitation Protocol

Phase I – Initial phase

Goal: Regain range of motion within tolerance, decrease pain and swelling, neutralize muscle atrophy

  • Day of surgery
    • Isometric gluteal sets
    • Ankle pumps
    • Heel slides
  • Post-operative days 1-7
    • Weight bearing with crutches
    • Isometric quadriceps, gluteals, hamstrings, adductors, and abductors
    • Active assist range of motion all planes
    • Hip mobilization and gentle joint distraction techniques
    • Closed chain bridging, balance drills

Phase II – Intermediate phase

Goal: Regain and build muscle strength, focus on symmetry/core strength

Post-operative weeks 2-3

  • Wean crutches and normalize gait pattern
  • Increase range of motion limits
  • Gentle progressive resistive exercises
  • Closed chain single leg bridging
  • Open chain hip 4-way
  • Mobilization with movement
  • Proprioceptive/balance work
  • Stationary bike/aqua therapy

Phase III – Advanced phase

Goal: Improve functional strength and endurance, core strength & stability

Post-operative weeks 4-6

  • Continue flexibility exercises
  • Progressively increase resistive and functional strengthening exercises
  • Initiate sport specific exercises
  • Gradual return to sport

Note:Weight bearing may be limited after some surgical procedures with a hip arthroscopy, including:

  • Labral repair
  • Iliopsoas release
  • Microfracture
  • Capsulorraphy

Individual rehabilitation protocols will vary by patient and procedure, this information is simply a guide to the rehabilitation following hip arthroscopy in some patients. Always defer to your doctor when making decisions about your rehabilitation!

McCarthy, JC “Hip Arthroscopy: Applications and Technique” J. Am. Acad. Ortho. Surg., May 1995; 3: 115 – 122.