- Patient Education
- Educational Materials
- Crutch Training
Crutch Use Instructions
Setting up the crutches:
- Secure the arm pads and hand grips prior to use.
- Tighten all hardware (ie. screws and wing nuts) at least once per week.
- Clean the crutch tips of pebbles and dirt to minimize slipping.
- Have someone assist you until you master the technique of crutch use.
- Remove loose rugs and electrical cords from all potential paths to avoid tripping and falling.
- Replace crutch tips if they should wear out.
- Be careful on wet indoor surfaces which may be extremely slick.
To walk with crutches:
- Put your crutches under your arms and press them against your body.
- Make sure to bear your weight on your hands, not under your arms.
- Move the crutches ahead of you approximately 12 inches.
- Push down on the grips as you step slightly past the crutches, leading with the GOOD LEG.
- Advance the crutches forward approximately 12 inches; then continue.
To get up from a seated position:
- Hold both crutches on affected side.
- Slide to the edge of the chair or seat.
- Push down on the arm of the chair on the good side.
- Stand up, then put the crutches under your arms.
- Press the arm pads into the body.
To sit down:
- Back up to the chair or seat to within 2-3 inches.
- Put both crutches in your hand on the affected side, reach backwards for the chair or seat with the other hand.
- Lower yourself slowly into the chair, bending at the hips.
To go upstairs:
- Start close to the bottom step, and push down with your hands.
- Step up to the first step, remembering to lead with your GOOD LEG. (Good leg "UP")
- Next, step up to the same step with the other foot, making sure to keep the crutches with your affected limb.
To go downstairs:
- Start at the edge of the step, keeping your hips beneath you.
- Slowly bring the crutches with your affected limb down to the next step. BAD LEG first down the stairs. (Bad Leg “DOWN”)
- Be sure to bend at the hips and knees to prevent leaning too far forward, which could cause you to fall.
- If handrail is available, place both crutches in hand on unaffected side with rail on affected side.
- Advance hand on rail slightly and place crutches on lower stair.
- Then advance both legs simultaneously to next stair.