Range of Motion Exercises: Passive Leg

Range of Motion Exercises: Passive Leg


Range of motion is a set of exercises done to keep normal movement in the joints. The exercises also help to keep the muscles flexible. When the joints and muscles do not have normal range of motion, problems can occur. You and your support person will be shown how to do each exercise. If you have questions, please ask.

Your therapist will instruct you on how often and how many time to repeat each exercise in a day.


Hip exercises

Hips 1: Raise the leg, allowing the hip and knee to bend. Gently push the knee towards the chest while holding the other leg straight.


Hips 2: With the foot and leg resting on your shoulder, place both hands over the kneecap to keep the leg straight. Raise the leg as far as you can from the bed until you feel a pull. The goal is a 90 degree angle from the hips. Keep the hips and opposite leg straight.



Hips 3: Bend the hip and knee up so it is directly above the hip (A). Put one hand above the knee and one hand on the ankle. Gently turn the leg so the foot is inward across the other leg (B). Now gently turn the leg out to the side (C). Gently bring the leg back to starting position (D).



Hips 4: Keep the leg flat on the bed. Hold the leg above the knee and roll the leg in and out.



Hips 5: With one hand under the ankle and on hand under the knee, slowly bring the leg straight out to the side and then back in. Keep the kneecap pointed up.



Ankle exercise 

Hold the heel of the foot firmly in your hand. Support the rest of the foot with your forearm. Slowly push back the foot for a firm stretch. Hold the stretch for 20 seconds.


Foot exercise

Move the entire foot in circles clockwise and counterclockwise.


Toe exercise

Bend and straighten each toe 5 times.



© 2000 – July 25, 2019, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

This handout is for informational purposes only. Talk with your doctor or healthcare team if you have any questions about your care. For more health information, call the Library for Health Information at 614-293-3707 or email: health-info@osu.edu.