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?
All of the above answers sound great, but I would suggest adding some cardio to the routine as well. Part of his problem with standing for long periods of time may be that he doesn’t have the stamina. I usually start my older clients out on a recumbant bike or a Nu-Step for 5-10 minutes and progress them from there based on how well they are doing. This will also help build his knee strength. He may have already been riding a stationary bike after his first knee replacement so maybe that would be a good place to start. If you have access to his doctor or physical therapist it would likely be very beneficial to ask for their input.