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The “secret” to using a cane correctly

Body of senior man leaning on cane

Have you ever experienced an injury where you needed assistance walking? If so, here are a few secrets on how to use a cane correctly.

 

 

First, you have to decide exactly how much assistance you need. Walking canes are used for minor injuries to the lower extremities, and should not be used to hold a large amount of body weight. When you feel unsteady on your feet, a cane is a good tool to use. Did you know canes are considered to be the lightest walking aid?

 

Second, you need to choose the style of cane. Some things you should keep in mind when making your decision is: grip, color, and height. To set your cane to the correct height, try to level the top of the cane to your wrist. Keep in mind, your arm should stay to your side during this time.

 

How to walk with a cane - Imgur
When walking with your cane, you should use your cane on the uninjured side of your body, so it can provide support to the opposite lower extremity. Why should you use the cane on this side? This is because it helps you walk more natural, your opposite leg to your opposite hand.

 

Can walking- Climbing stairs - Imgur

 

“To climb stairs, move your good leg first.” “Follow with your affected leg and cane simultaneously.” (arthritis.org).

 

 

Cane Walking- Down stairs - Imgur

When going down the stairs, you should step with your weakened leg, and then follow it with your strong leg.  

In conclusion, there are many types of canes, and choosing the one that is right for you is important to the injury healing process.  If you do continue to experience difficulty walking with your cane, you should follow up with a specialist or your primary care physician for help.

 

 

Author: Britney Timme

 

Sources:
http://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/pain-management/joint-protection/cane-tips.php
http://www.livestrong.com/article/17932-proper-way-use-walking-cane/

 

 

 

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