Pilates exercises with fused hip

by Debra


I have had a surgical Arthrodesis of left hip(fusion) at the age of about 1 year, due to undiagnosed Osteomyelitis.

I therefore have no hip joint or socket. I have now just turned 52 and over the last 3 years my life has been turned upside down.

I collapsed at work without losing consciousness and the my doctor finally sent me to a neurologist who thought it might be epilepsy, which I had suspected wasn't.

Over that year I "collapsed" in total of 60 times.

It was during that time that my friend, who is an aromatherapist noticed bruising over my left iliac bone. I also noticed numbness over the left buttock, weakness of left leg, and then the pain set in.

I have disc degeneration of my lower spine and I am still undergoing various tests.

I am pretty sure my fused hip, over 51 years is the root cause of all this and am seeking a surgeon who might be able to unpick and reconstruct hip, but it is a risky and complex operation and all the orthopedic doctors I have seen will not do it.

I am slim, very aware of nutrition and correct posture, i.e. sitting and standing and have always tried to stand as straight as possible.

I am frustrated that I cannot walk from my hips or sit correctly even though I know the right way to do so.

Up until 3 years ago I have managed pretty well due to staying slim and active, i.e. love gardening, walks etc, but all of this is now becoming increasingly difficult.

I have been put on Tramadol and am not happy with the amount of painkillers I am having to take, I am also unable to work as I find sitting causes pain, as well as standing still, so am also having to look at what work I could do from home.

I also have scoliosis of the spine.

I am so determined to help myself and get fed up seeing and reading all the exercises and advice for back ache, since most of them I simply cannot do.

Have you ever encountered someone with fused hip and do you have any hip exercises to recommend?

Hope to hear from you, as I am really have a tough time, whilst trying to remain hopeful.

Kind regards, Debra


Hello Debra and very sorry to hear of your painful condition.

After reading some of the research on hip fusions its seems that most people start having knee, hip, and back pain about 26 years after the fusion.

You have made it well past! One thing to be happy about.

Now, you are feeling the effects of the arthritis and degeneration that has set in.

You have probably lost some strength in the muscles that support your hip, which is common in a fusion as there is lack of mobility.

Especially the abductors of your hip, which takes the leg out to the side.

I would recommend doing weight bearing exercises on that leg that do not cause you pain. Also, work on strengthening the muscles of the other leg and doing Pilates or core based exercises to help with back pain.

Swimming or walking in the pool might give you some relief.

I will attach some pages here for you to review.

Again, pick and choose those exercises that do not give you more pain. There may be only a few that you can do to start with. If you have a Pilates practitioner in your area I would recommend seeing one for an evaluation.

Exercises for Arthritis Hip Pain relief.

Pilates bridge for pelvic support.

Hip Joint Exercise for Support and Stability in the Hips.

Best Regards,
Jennifer Adolfs

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Aug 02, 2016
Hip fusion
by: Bob Egan

I've had a left hip fusion for over 20 years now and have adjusted pretty well . I still get frustrated with my lack of mobility at times . I did find a bike (3g stepper ) that i can ride , which has helped . But there are so many activities that i miss ! I guess what in saying is Thank you for posting this ! I always felt so alone with my difficulties and felt not many people can identify. I am currently trying to get my skydiving certification, but my hip poses many obstacles ! I will try to improve my mobility through these exercises. Thank you all for sharing. I know now that im not alone !

Jul 01, 2015
by: Anonymous

I also have a fused hip, though mine is my right one. I have consulted with numerous doctors because my body rejected the fusion: basically causing continuing chronic knee and back pain ever since I had the fusion.

A lot of the troubles I have with exercises is that they are based on having mobility, which those of use with a fused hip do not have.

So for exercises, I concentrate on strengthening my other leg and stretching the muscles that are connected. Yes it hurts, but after a while of doing them it gets better.
For my hip that is fused I try to work on weight bearing exercises and do a lot of lower leg exercises.
I also do a lot of abdominal and back strengthening and stretching exercises: definitely use a yoga ball and yoga mat. It helps take some of the pressure off your "hip"

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