The top of your crutches should reach between 1 and 1 1/2
inches below your armpits while you stand up straight.
The handgrips of the crutches should be even with the top of
your hip line.
Your elbows should bend a bit when you use the handgrips.
Hold the top of the crutches tightly to your sides, and use
your hands to absorb the weight. Don’t let the tops of the
crutches press into your armpits.
Lean forward slightly and put your crutches about one foot
ahead of you. Begin your step as if you were going to use
the injured foot or leg, but shift your weight to the
crutches instead of the injured foot. Your body swings
forward between the crutches. Finish the step normally with
your non-injured leg. When the non-injured leg is on the
ground, move your crutches ahead in preparation for the next
step. Keep focused on where you are walking, not on your
Back up to a sturdy chair. Put your injured foot in front of
you and both crutches in one hand. Use the other hand to
feel for the seat of your chair. Slowly lower yourself into
it. Lean your crutches upside down in a handy location.
(Crutches tend to fall over when they are stood on their
tips.) To stand up, inch yourself to the front of the chair.
Hold both crutches in the hand on your good leg side. Push
yourself up and stand on the good leg.
To walk up and down stairs with crutches, you need to be
both strong and flexible. Facing the stairway, hold the
handrail with one hand and tuck both crutches under your
armpit on the other side. When you’re going up, lead with
your good foot, keeping the injured foot raised behind you.
When you’re going down, hold your injured foot up in front,
and hop down each stair on your good foot. Take it one step
at a time. You may want someone to help you, at least at
first. If you’re facing a stairway with no handrails, use
the crutches under both arms and hop up or down each step on
your good leg, using more strength. An easier way is to sit
on the stairs and inch yourself up and down each step. Start
by sitting on the lowest stair with your injured leg out in
front. Hold both crutches flat against the stairs in your
opposite hand. Scoot your bottom up to the next step, using
your free hand and good leg for support. Face the same
direction when you go down the stairs this way.