I have a 74 year old male client who is awaiting a knee replacement (the other knee has already been replaced). He has had numerous surgeries (quadruple bypass, brain stem, removal of fluid from his knee, etc.) and is a real trooper. He cannot stand for very long so I have been doing most of my workouts with him in a chair. He would like to build more leg strength so he can stop using his walker and use a cane but it is very difficult to work his lower body with strength building exercises. Any suggestions on what I should be doing to (1) build his leg strength up and (2) keep him from getting frustrated until he gets his knee surgery?
I would recommend doing some basic chair squats, just as he would if he were getting up and down out of his chair. He could use the walker to assist if he has and at some point be able to use his own body weight without any assistance. As he gets stronger you can easily add resistance with a light dumbbell, if he were ever to need to challenge the exercise. Glute Bridge is another exercise that can be beneficial, as long as he can get up and down from the ground. This will help strengthen the core muscles and help build power within the hips, a very basic exercise with lots of benefits.