After an ACL injury it is very important to start exercising as soon as possible. This is helps retain your muscle strength around the ACL, range of motion and control swelling. These functions are vital to prepare an injured athlete for ACL surgery. These exercises can begin immediately after an ACL injury.

After prehabilitation, the knee will feel and look normal. However, IT IS NOT! DO NOT run, cut, jump, land, return to ANY sports that will involve any changing of direction. If one does, the knee will go out and will likely sustain further serious injury.

Retain Range of Motion

Leg Flexion

Heel Slides

(5-20 minutes, 1-2 times per day)

Sit down on the floor. Have your feet flat on the table with your knees bent. Slide your foot out on the floor with the foot flat on the floor. Then slide the foot back toward your butt as far as possible. This will work on bending the knee. Often is helpful to use a towel around the lower lef to help forcefully bend the knee.


It is optimal to have full range of motion prior to having your surgery.