How To Properly Use A Cane

How To Properly Use A Cane

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How To Properly Use A Cane

There are many reasons a physical therapist would recommend the use of a cane for a patient.  Pain in the lower extremity, leg weakness, or balance deficits are the most common reasons.  Choosing a cane over a walker or crutches depends on the patient’s complaints and impairments.  A walker allows you to put more force through your arms instead of your legs and works great if you cannot fully weight bear because of pain or a surgery.  Crutches offer the same support, but require significantly more balance to control.   A cane is smaller and easier to transport.  It still provides a small level of support and can alleviate pressure through a painful joint while walking.
One of my pet peeves is seeing people in the community using their cane incorrectly.  Using a cane the right way would maximize it’s benefits and make your gait pattern look smoother.

Get the most out of your cane by following these directions:

1. Choose the correct side.  For pain relief, you would use the cane on the opposite side.  For balance or weakness, you would use it on your strong side.
2. Fit it properly wearing your shoes, or whatever you will be wearing while using the cane. (video 1)
3. Learn and practice the correct pattern (video 2)
If you think the use of a cane would be beneficial or have further questions, I would love to help you out! Schedule an appointment with me by clicking below!


– Nicole


Nicole Dahmes

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