While a cane may seem like a simple and straightforward device to use, many people struggle with it at first. Some even decide to just move around less, rather than having to undergo the hassle of learning to use one.
Jayhawk Pharmacy is here to help. Today, we would like to offer you the basics of how to walk with a cane:
- Use the cane on the sound side of your body.
Many people start off using the cane on the weaker leg, but this is actually the opposite of how it should be used. Instead, use the cane on the stronger leg, pulling the weaker leg behind you.
- Your elbow should be at the 5:00 position.
A cane that is too high or too low can cause discomfort and hinder your ability to use it properly. You don’t want it so low that your hand is pointing directly down, but you don’t want it so high that your hand is pointing in front of you. If you think of your body like a clock, you would want your upper arm tilted as if it’s at the 12 position, and your lower arm tilted as if it’s at the 5 position. That height is just right to hold a cane.
- Point at yourself with your thumb.
The most efficient way to hold your cane is to have your thumb pointing towards your body, and the back of your hand facing away from it. This hand position will allow you to maintain the best balance.
- Use stairs with handrails, if you can.
When using the stairs, make sure you place one hand on the rails (if they have them). Start by placing your sound leg on the first step, then put your cane on the same step next to your leg. Then, leaning on both the rail and the cane, pull your weak leg up the step.
It will take you some time to learn how to use a cane, but it’s a skill anyone can master. Hopefully, these tips have helped you take the right steps towards greater mobility. If you’re ready to start using a cane, see Jayhawk Pharmacy today!