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Knee Rehabilitation: Free Squat

Once you can bear weight on your leg without pain, start adding advanced exercises to your workout. Before you begin, talk with a physical therapist or certified athletic trainer. Start slowly, and rest between each set. As you feel stronger, increase the number of sets.


Ask your healthcare provider if you’re ready to do this exercise. If you do too much too soon, you could create new knee problems, or even re-injure your knee.

  • Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart, or slightly wider, feet flat, and toes pointed slightly out.

  • Keeping your back straight and heels on the floor, bend down from your knees and hips. Don’t bend past 90 degrees, or so far that it causes pain.

  • Keep your knees behind the plane of your toes. Your knees should line up with your second toe.

  • Hold for 1 to 5 seconds. Then slowly rise back up.

  • Do 2 sets of 10 repetitions.

Woman bending knees at 90 degrees, arms held out in front of her at shoulder height.

Online Medical Reviewer: Elizabeth Oswald PT DPT
Online Medical Reviewer: Marianne Fraser MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Trina Bellendir PT
Date Last Reviewed: 3/1/2024
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