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Navigating on Crutches
last updated:
Fri, 3/15/2013 4:15 PM

After an injury or surgical procedure, you may be required to use crutches to get around.  At first, everything seems difficult. Using crutches eventually becomes easier with practice, but here are a few tips to get you started:

  • The correct fit: The top of your crutches should touch about 1-1.5 inches below your armpits when you stand up straight. The hand grips should be even with your hip line. Make sure your hands absorb the weight of the crutches, not your armpits. 
  • Walking tips: Lean forward slightly and put your crutches about one foot ahead of you. Walk as you normally would, but use the crutches instead of the injured foot. Try to focus on where you are walking rather than on your feet. 
  • Sitting: Back up to a sturdy chair to sit down. Put your injured foot in front of you and both crutches in one hand, and then slowly lower yourself into the chair. 
  • Standing up: Inch yourself onto the front of the chair, and hold both crutches on the side with your uninjured leg. Push yourself up and stand on your good leg. 
  • Stairs: Facing stairs on crutches can be tricky. Hold the railing with one hand and tuck both crutches under your armpit on the other side. Going up, lead with your good foot and keep your injured foot raised behind you. Going down, hold your injured foot up in front and hop down each stair on your uninjured foot. 

For more details on how to use crutches properly, click here: https://www.methodistmedicalequipment.org/Newsletter#4

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Methodist Healthcare is an integrated health care delivery system, dedicated to the art of healing through our faith-based commitment to minister to the whole person. 1211 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee 38104 • (901) 516-7000

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