Single Leg Wall Slides
This exercise is intended as a strengthening exercise for the hips, quads, and lower leg. It will work on increasing strength and control throughout the knee and lower extremity. It will aid in increasing Range of Motion (ROM) and it will help with increasing proprioception (balance control) throughout the hip, knee and ankle joints.
Why do this Exercise?
Wall slides provide for a more functional exercise that incorporates multiple muscle groups and joints while improving strength, ROM and proprioception.
Wall/Solid, securely closed door.
Position yourself so that you are standing with your back flat against a firm wall or solid door (ensure the door is closed and no one will open it from the other side). You may find it more comfortable to hold your hands flat against the wall at your sides for balance. Move your feet forward (away from the door) approximately 1-11/2 feet. Your feet should be shoulder width apart, toes pointed straight ahead and your kneecaps in line with your feet when you look down. Take the unaffected leg and lift it up off the floor. You may bend it backward so that your unaffected foot is up against the wall or hold it up off the ground to increase difficulty. Your back should be pressed flat up against the wall before the start of the exercise.
Just as with the double leg wall slides, slide your body down the wall, keeping your back and shoulders straight and against the wall. Bend as far down as you are comfortable but not to exceed 45°’s at the knee. You want to make sure that your knee does not extend out over your toes during the exercise (Tip: if you look down during the exercise and you can not see your toes past your knees then you have gone too far). Focus on keeping your foot, knee and hip (the bone that can be felt on the front of your hip with your hand) in a straight line thought the exercise. Hold the position for 5 seconds and then push yourself back up the wall to the start position (do not lock your knees out, keep them slightly bent). Take a few seconds break and then repeat 10-15 times for 3-5 sets with a 1 minute rest between sets. This exercise should be repeated 1-2 times per day.
This exercise should only be performed within a pain free range of motion. Do not continue this exercise if there is pain, swelling or a significant increase in skin temperature (skin becomes hot/warm to the touch). The recommended repetitions are here to serve as guideline. Keep in mind that each person is different and you must modify your activity according to the feedback your body provides. If you feel your muscles getting fatigued (a good thing) and you begin losing control (leg begins twitching) stop and return to the exercise at another time. Do not use quick jerky movements with this exercise; it is intended to be performed in a slow and controlled motion. Do not exceed the 45° recommendation for this exercise. Doing so can cause increased stress on the knee joint, its ligaments and its muscles.