8+ Best Exercises Recommended for Hip Arthritis

Hip osteoarthritis is the medical term for the more commonly known hip arthritis. The degenerative disease, osteoarthritis causes cartilage to break down. This makes the bones rub together which creates bone spurs, pain and stiffness. With osteoarthritis of the hip, you may not exercise because of the pain. It becomes a vicious circle because the lack of exercise may contribute to muscle atrophy and osteoarthritis. It is suggested to enjoy physical activity regularly to help keep muscles strong, promote balance and keep your hip joints healthy.

Exercises for Arthritic Hips

With specific exercise, you can strengthen your hip muscles and support joint movement. It is important to note that when you do these exercises, you should follow them precisely. You may experience muscle aches and some pain. Some of this is normal and you should allow time before changing your routine, as long as your doctor approves.

Perform all exercises slowly and with care, three times daily. You can select between three to four exercises for every session. Don’t forget to stretch and warm up, as well as spend time cooling down. It is suggested to take an easy walk for a few minutes before starting your exercises. This helps get your muscles ready to exercise and improves circulation. Don’t forget to take a slow walk at the end of your exercise to help your heart rate slow back down.

Suggested exercises for arthritic hips are:

1. Flexor Stretch

First stand with in a walking position. Both hands in front of you for support, lean and bend your knee from the forward leg. Push hips forward while keeping back straight. You’ll feel the stretch from front hip to thigh through back leg. 20-30 second hold and repeat about five times.

2. Static Gluteals

Lie with your legs and back straight. Tighten your butt muscles by clenching and hold for ten seconds. Repeat 10-15 times.

3. Bridge

Lie with back with knees bent and squeeze your butt, lifting it from the floor. Don’t arch the back. Relax and return to start. Ten repeats for a rep.

4. Active Hip Flexion

This is another one of exercises for arthritic hips. Stand with firm support available. Lift your troubled leg in front, while bending at knee and hip as much as you can. Lower back down slowly. Ten repeats for a rep.

5. Active Hip Abduction

While standing with firm support, lift the troubled leg out to the side without bending from the waist. Relax to starting position. Ten repeats for a rep.

6. Quad Strengthening-

Use a chair to balance and do a mini squat, bending your knees while keeping your back straight. Do at no more than a 45 angle. Ten repeats for a rep.

7. Clam

With your knees bent, lie on your side. Squeeze your buttocks. Lift the top knee as high as possible, without moving your pelvis back or forward. Keep feet together and your back straight through the movement. Lower your leg slowly down. Ten repeats for a rep.

8. Hip Abduction

Lying on one side, bend the lower leg, while keeping the top one straight, using your ankle and heel for the movement. Slowly put back down. Ten repeats for a rep.

9. Other Exercises

Both swimming and bicycling are great exercises for arthritic hips if you are able. They can improve strength, mobility and overall fitness with minimal stress on your joints. It’s always advisable to check with your doctor before starting an exercise program. 

Other Ways to Help Your Hip

Lose Weight

One way to help your hip is to lose some weight. Not only will you look better, you will feel better. Every extra pound you are carrying adds up to more stress on your joints. This excess weight can mean excess pain.

Ice It

If your hip feels hot and inflamed, add some ice to reduce the swelling. This will constrict blood vessels, keeping fluid from surrounding the tissue.


Listen to your doctor. There are some medications made for pain relief, when others help with inflammation. Most hip osteoarthritis patients have other medications, so check with your doctor if changing medicine.

Stronger Bones

Speak to your doctor about bone density. If they think it is necessary, they will order a test. You can also seek the advice your doctor or dietitian about your vitamin D and calcium intake. You need to make sure you are getting adequate amounts.


A high-quality massage may help you get the relief you so desperately need. Get a good rub down from a skilled professional. Different people will get different benefits from a massage from decreased stiffness and pain from arthritis, improved immunity and sleep quality as well as improved circulation. It can also help with depression and stress.

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