Walking sticks are one of the most common mobility aids, providing support and assistance with balance.
They can also take the weight off an injured or weakened leg.
It’s important to choose the right walking stick for you or your client and get the correct handle for your needs.
It’s also vital that you get the right height to ensure the person using it remains safe. If you choose an adjustable stick, you can tailor it to the right height.
What styles of walking stick handles are available?
What types of stick are available?
Simply follow the four steps to choose the right walking stick:
To check a stick is the right height, place the stock’s base around 15cms from the outside of the foot. The height of the handle should be at the crease of the wrist when the elbow is bent slightly.
Take the measurement and ensure it matches the first one.
How should you use different walking sticks?
Generally, a single stick is used on the stronger side of the body, so the stick should be used next to a person’s ‘good’ leg.
Move it forward when the affected or weaker leg moves forward. The ‘good’ leg follows afterwards.
If someone is using dual sticks, they can move a stock forward at the same time as the opposite leg, then the other stick and the remaining leg.
If using a quad stick, position the base with the straight side near to the body. Ensure all four points are in contact with the ground when the stick is put down.
How do you use sticks on stairs?
Going up – Lift the ‘good’ leg first then move the stick and the weaker leg on the same step.
Going down – Lower the weaker leg and the stick first, then put the ‘good’ leg on the same step.