Useful Tips

How to walk on crutches: step-by-step instructions with photos and videos


According to the generally accepted opinion, walking on crutches should be terrible and unbearable. However, when you know that crutches are a long time, you have to adapt and look at the problem from a practical point of view. And then it turns out that everything is not so scary and live with it too.

This life began on March 1, 2003 when, due to the fault of a drunk driver who flew into the oncoming lane, we had an accident. Dad and Fedya, my son, who was 11 months old, died on the spot. Mom in serious condition was taken to Sklif, me - to the 50th hospital. God is merciful and we do not remember the accident.

Our injuries turned out to be almost the same - a fragmented fracture of the left thigh and a concussion, the mom is heavier and the second knee is damaged. A month and a half in a hospital in neighboring bunks (my relatives got me transferred to Sklif for my mother), a heavy operation and six months on crutches.

Suddenly, it turned out that in the position of a seriously ill person, in addition to grief, pain and fear, you can find a place for other feelings. Perhaps, if everyone had survived, we would have felt more sorry for ourselves, the position of a disabled person, even if acquired for a while, would seem unbearable, and life on crutches would be hopeless. But everything happened the way it happened, and the injuries, despite the seriousness, were not the biggest problem (thanks to Sklif surgeons: they had great legs and were very kind to us). There was simply nothing left but to look at our position from the outside and with humor, so the experience was decided to be considered positive and worthy of being transferred to paper. Perhaps he will help someone to treat a difficult situation differently or to better understand a sick relative. But it’s better if you don’t need this experience at all.

So, if you have crutches in your hands.

At first everything will be: dizziness, weakness, and fear of walking up the stairs. Gradually, everything goes away. It is only a matter of time and desire. The more you walk, the better you feel. However, the recovery process is not quick, and after half a year we are still tired of more mere mortals.

Basically, a person with crutches can do almost everything:. You can afford to sit at home and take cares of loved ones for a month, from the strength of two. But for six months, with this attitude to the issue, you lose the will to win, weaken and degrade. It’s good if there is someone to take care of and for whom to live. Elderly parents and young children who themselves require attention and care are the best medicine, but the most important thing here is the desire to live as fully as possible.

That summer, we spent two weeks at the cottage with a wonderful composition: my mother with crutches, I with crutches, my 90-year-old grandmother and six-year-old Sasha. In life, there is always a place for a feat:. I also had to carry water from the well in a can in 10 receptions, and raise the fallen fence, and even dispose of the contents of the dry closet in compost (I will not describe the outcome of this event here, so as not to injure sensitive natures). All these actions performed by the lame team most closely resembled the Mask-Show tour. The men who covered the neighbor’s roof quit their jobs, took off their T-shirts, lit their cigarettes and, opening their mouths, watched our actions.

I had to adapt to life with limited capabilities. Each new independent action was a small victory. He climbed into the bath on his own? Hooray. Managed to bring a cup of tea from the kitchen to the room? Hooray! Hooray. First time he went to the store? Hooray! Hooray! Hooray.

Does this remind you of anything? Right! Then I well understood what three-year-old children feel, experiencing the “I myself” crisis. Here you are helpless, everyone helps you, everyone does it for you (they tried to me in the hospital with the best intentions and feed from a spoon - it's terrible). And suddenly you feel you can myself (get to the toilet, wash the dishes, catch a taxi and go somewhere for business). Your pride is indescribable. I want more. And then it turns out that everyone is used to taking care of you and are not going to take positions without a fight. And suddenly you, an adult, are told: "Nooo, bashing! You yourself cannot." You told them: "I can, I tried - it turns out." And to you: "Do not, do not. We will do it better." It is insulting, annoying and after some time leads to the struggle for independence, which is perceived as ingratitude.

On the other hand, you yourself also get used to the fact that it’s easier to ask someone to bring-submit than to collect crutches and, interfering with your family, proudly march for what you need. At first it is justified, and then it becomes a habit that you have to get rid of, reminding yourself: "Eeee, my friend, there are already no crutches!"

On the other hand, one should not expect constant optimism. There are all sorts of moods. Sometimes it really “attacks” and one must allow indulgence up to complete apathy. The main thing is not to get carried away with self-pity. A broken leg is a wonderful reason to do something that in ordinary life is not enough time and moral strength. You can embroider, knit, read, compose fairy tales for children, in the end - to review your favorite films without a twinge of conscience.

If you walk on crutches, be prepared for the fact that all the “city crazy” people you meet will be yours. A day did not pass, so that they would not poke a finger on the street or stick to advice. And having appeared together on the street, we caused a real sensation. In the end, the conclusion was born that our people are not indifferent to other people's problems. Moreover, indifference is divided into constructive (help in overcoming obstacles or words of sympathy) and non-constructive (open mouths of oncoming retirees and harassment of advisers, often taking on an aggressive color). The apotheosis happened when near the metro I was harassed by a not-so-tidy uncle who regularly stood on the street with the announcement "I rule Scoliosis and Osteochondrosis." At the sight of a potential client, his eyes lit up and with a cry of "I know what you need," he began to haunt me. Naturally, I refused his help, politely explaining that everything that could be corrected was corrected in Sklif. But it did not help. Uncle got some kind of magic garlic tincture and began to water it to me, promising that now I would throw away crutches and go home on my own. I had to run away, saving clean clothes while my uncle did not back down. I had to send him away, after which he was offended and said that: “Now you’ll always be left with crutches and that’s what you need.”

Do not hope that they will let you in the store without waiting in line or give way to the subway. That is, of course, we will have a lot of good people, but if you choose an active life yourself, you should rely only on your own strengths. In order not to be offended later. There is great scope for psychological and sociological research:. What a pleasure it is to watch young people tossing around, not imagining to bring a saving newspaper with them. And you can’t sit, and you don’t want to give in. Or a hopeless turn in a summer house of about 10 slightly hungover men, where we came with my grandmother and Sasha for yogurt. Guys for a long time in a low voice discussed that "these are the very ones.". Thought - will miss. But it turned out that beer is more important. On the other hand, of course, no one is obliged. I had to constantly remind myself of this.

Our city is not suitable for the disabled. Neither people, nor transport, nor buildings are ready for your appearance. Heavy, as in the case of nuclear war, the entrance door strive to slam you. It’s difficult to cross the road even at the green light of a traffic light. Slightly delayed - drivers confidently moving in your direction. A zebra is not considered a transition at all. If you have healthy legs, you will run over if you're lucky. Getting into a bus with two crutches is almost impossible. The exception is a Mercedes with a low footrest. Many people read in their eyes: "Well, where did you get out with your crutches? I would sit at home." You can stay at home for a month. And you can’t sit at home for half a year or even more so. Apparently, we have a society of optimists: no one thinks that tomorrow he may be in the place of this old man or a disabled person who can hardly overcome an obstacle course on his way from home to the store. Everyone lives today.

The most important thing is that it turns out that all these difficulties are surmountable. The desire to live fully is stronger than inconvenience and moral discomfort. The time we spent on crutches, for some reason, is remembered with pleasure, as if we managed to acquire something important, which was not there before.

And most importantly: the world is not without good people. Moreover, good people lot! In ordinary life, this is not noticeable, and when misfortune happens, you are suddenly helped not only by relatives and friends, but also by complete strangers. It reconciles with life. Our world is better than it seems.

Smooth surface movement

This is the simplest case, so you can master the technique of walking on a flat surface quite quickly.

However, it must be borne in mind that the techniques differ depending on the number of crutches and their type. In addition, there are instructions on how to learn how to move around for children.

Walking with one crutch is quite simple. The basic principle is that support is established only by a healthy limb. The instruction is:

  1. The support is placed forward at a distance of a small step (50 cm).
  2. Relying on a crutch and a healthy limb, a sore leg is transferred.
  3. And then they take a healthy step.

In this case, the sequence of actions is as follows:

  1. First you need to put the crutch 7-10 cm away from the middle of the leg and at the same time forward 15-20 cm. That is, the support will go a little immediately forward and away from a healthy limb.

  1. Then they put forward a healthy leg.
  2. Then move the patient.
  3. In the same way they walk along the entire path.

Commentary on both cases can be seen in the video:


It is very important to be able to go down the stairs on crutches and climb the stairs correctly.

You can walk on them in exactly the same way - support should be only on a healthy foot.

Climbing stairs with crutches is possible with one support or two at once. The first option is suitable for those cases when the stairs have reliable railings. Then it is necessary to act in this way:

  1. Reach the railing, put one hand on them.
  2. Place a crutch in the armpit on the opposite side of the railing. It is advisable that the second support bears the assistant. If this is not possible, you will have to put them together and rely on both at once.
  3. First, a healthy leg becomes the upper step: the body rests on it and a crutch standing next to the diseased limb.
  4. Then the support is placed on the same step.
  5. After this, the diseased limb moves to a healthy one.

It is also possible that there is no railing near the stairs. Then you need to move immediately on 2 supports.

The principle will be exactly the same - first a healthy leg, then a crutch, then an injured limb, as shown in the video.

To descend the stairs with the help of axillary crutches is necessary in this way:

  1. Put both supports one step lower.
  2. Lower a healthy limb first.
  3. And then put a sore foot nearby.
  4. In the same way, get to the end of the path.

If you cannot walk on the crutches on the stairs during the descent (the person feels very insecure), it is better to sit on the top step, put your hands on it, and with your healthy foot on the bottom step. In this way, you can gradually drag the body weight from step to step. It is desirable that an assistant be nearby: he will carry crutches up to 1 floor.

How to walk on elbow crutches

Walking in Canada (the so-called elbow crutches) can be made completely safe using this technique:

  1. First put both supports (approximately 50 cm).
  2. Then they put a healthy leg slightly in front of them (the support will be next to the heel as a result).
  3. At the same time, a diseased limb is transferred.
  4. U-turn is always performed, relying solely on a healthy leg.

How to walk on crutches without one leg

If the patient had to amputate the limb, he will have to move with support only on one leg. The principles of movement are exactly the same, however, you will have to rely on both crutches at the same time.

When moving on slippery surfaces and stairs, the assistance of an attendant is desirable.

How to teach walking on crutches of a child

The technique of walking in this case is exactly the same, but in the case of a child, a special psychological approach is important.

The basic requirement for learning how to walk on crutches is to memorize the basic rules.

This can be done with the help of short phrases that reflect the essence of the principle:

  1. When walking on 2 supports: first a healthy leg, then a sick one.
  2. When walking on 1 crutch: first a sore leg, then a healthy one.

The basic principle is that a healthy leg will always go one step further, except when using 1 leg. In addition, it is important to choose crutches for children with a pleasant design, so that the child is as comfortable as possible to use them.

Problems due to impaired walking technique

The task of how to walk on crutches correctly is also connected with the solution of possible problems that are manifested in such symptoms:

  • muscle pain, especially in the arms and legs,
  • numbness of the limbs
  • the appearance of puffiness after walking,
  • exacerbation of trauma (pain in damaged areas),
  • rubbing the skin (such as armpits).

The reasons for these adverse manifestations are associated with various violations of the technique of movement or with improper selection of crutches in height.

Therefore, before you buy a specific model, it is important to consult a doctor. If the patient is in a weakened state (with disability, in old age, with varying degrees of obesity, after a major operation), crutches as a means of rehabilitation may not suit him at all. Therefore, in such cases, it is advisable to first consult with a doctor, and then make the appropriate decision.

7 useful tips that will be useful to everyone

To learn how to walk on crutches well, it is important not only to master the specific techniques described above, but also to observe such rules:

  1. First of all, you need to carefully monitor the surface - how smooth it is, whether there are obstacles. Even a small crack on a tile or a small object can become a serious hindrance. Crutches should be used with extreme caution - otherwise you can easily lose balance.
  2. In no case should you wear shoes even with small heels. Boots or boots with a uniform surface are allowed. It is desirable that it be ribbed to create additional friction.

  1. If the surface is slippery (water, pollution, ice in winter, etc.), steps should be reduced at least 2 times.
  2. You never need to rush, especially if you have to go down the stairs. It’s better to be late, but to ensure complete safety.
  3. It is always necessary to take breaks so that both legs and arms rest. Excessive load is not allowed - you can damage the muscles, after which they will hurt for several days.
  4. After a long walk, it is advisable to do a simple massage so that the tissues relax well after exertion.
  5. As for transporting things, it is better to put them in a backpack, which can be hung on the back with 2 straps. He should sit tight enough on his back so as not to slip in different directions.

Thus, it is quite possible to master various methods of movement with the help of crutches for both adults and children. Observing all safety measures, it is possible to exclude falls and any awkward movements. If walking causes significant discomfort, you should immediately consult a doctor. Other crutches may be suitable for the patient, or you may need to purchase a wheelchair or walker for the elderly.

How to learn how to walk on crutches during fractures (instructions)

It is better to start learning at home and only when you are sure to go out. If it is difficult to immediately start using two crutches, you can first learn how to walk with one crutch. To do this, you need to take a crutch with one hand, and hold on to a support with the other hand (for example, a table).

    1. Put the crutch forward at a step distance.
    1. Transfer body weight to a crutch.
  1. Move a healthy leg to stride length.

With heavy weight, walking with one crutch is not recommended. One crutch can withstand from 80 to 120 kilograms of weight. It turns out that a pair of crutches can withstand 2 times more. Therefore, in order to avoid damage to crutches with heavy weight, it is better to learn to walk immediately on 2 crutches.

After you learn how to handle one crutch. You can try walking on two.

    1. Place one crutch forward at a step distance.
    1. Set the second crutch at the same distance.
    1. Transfer body weight to crutches.
  1. Move a healthy leg a step distance.

Once everything starts to work out, try moving two crutches forward at the same time.

The figure shows 5 options for moving on crutches. Choose which will be more to your liking.

Useful Tips:

  • It is better to place crutches a little to the sides. This way you will be more stable.
  • Try not to lean on your armpits. Сначала вам будет казаться, что так ходить легче, но со временем у вас появится боль из-за постоянного трения.

Большинство хорошего видео о том, как научиться правильно ходить на костылях на английском языке. Вот одно из них. Всё понятно и без перевода.

Спуск по лестнице

    1. Ставим костыли на ступеньку ниже.
    1. Спускаем больную ногу.
  1. Ставим здоровую ногу на ступеньку с костылями.

If there is a railing near the steps, you can take both crutches in one hand and lean against the railing with your hand. When descending and climbing stairs, most of the load should have a healthy foot. Hands mostly help keep balance.

In the next video you can see how a girl goes down the stairs on crutches.

How much do you need to walk on crutches after a fracture

With hip fracture skeletal traction is done first. It takes 1.5-2 months. After this, gypsum is applied, and stepping on the foot is allowed only after 3-4 months.

Hip fracture It is treated in various ways:

    1. Immobilization - gypsum is applied and we keep the foot alone. It is not recommended to treat a femoral neck fracture in this way, as muscle atrophy can occur.
    1. Osteosynthesis - reposition of bone fragments with screws or a pin is done. This technique is slightly better, but scars may form.
  1. Endoprosthetics - a metal prosthesis is inserted. The best option. But in this case, you have to walk on crutches 3-6 months.

If a ankle fracture treated without a plaster cast, then walking on crutches will have only 1.5-2 months. With the application of gypsum and surgical treatment, the period may slightly increase and amount to 2-2.5 months. In the worst case, with skeletal traction, the treatment period is stretched, it can stretch up to 4-6 months.

How to walk on crutches after removing the cast

After removing the cast begins second stage of rehabilitation. A week you need to walk on crutches, but fully stand up. The first few days there should be an elastic bandage on the leg. After a week, you can start using a cane instead of crutches. Massage courses and physiotherapy will greatly help in recovery. About a month later, it will be possible to fully walk and engage in heavy physical labor.

At first, it’s very scary to step on a damaged leg. Pain will appear in the leg. This is due to the fact that the muscles did not move for a long time and the bones did not receive a load. But still you need to try to walk more and more. Swimming may well contribute to recovery.