Walking sticks, how do you use yours ? — Scope | Disability forum
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Walking sticks, how do you use yours ?

CockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,217 Disability Gamechanger
Up until recently I only used 1 walking stick, mainly for balance or to lean on when resting. I have now developed a weakness in my left leg and have had to start using 2 sticks to get around as left leg will not support me.
This led to me wondering about the different ways to use 2 sticks.
First I tried keeping 1 stick close to my left leg, thus bearing the weight on my left arm and moving second stick ahead. Then I tried moving both sticks forward keeping my weight on my good leg. Then leaning on the 2 sticks move my left leg forward with my body supported by both sticks and my good leg.
Has anyone any other suggestions for a 2 stick newbie ?
Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste


  • cathie
    cathie Member Posts: 143 Courageous
    I have no choice left wrist can't bear weight but hip and spine hurt more and neck ..but comes natural when  have no choice but to use them no thought needed lol 
    Only me .. cathie..
  • Topkitten
    Topkitten Member Posts: 1,285 Pioneering
    Until I have the surgery I need I can only use 1 stick though whether this is in the left or right hand has varied as the condition has worsened, Prior to that I used 2 sticks for a long time. I have had a problem with my left leg collapsing at odd intervals courtesy of a motorcycle accident I had at 17. For many years it wasn't an issue as exercise strengthened the muscles and overcame. Over the last few years, with being unable to exercise, it has returned. Consequently I use both sticks to protect that leg. Therefore swinging them in unison. I don't keep them close to the body but a little wider as this aids balance. Obviously this means using my better leg in isolation to take the weight and balance. Unfortunately the right leg suffers neural damage and the extra weight causes pain but that is preferable to falling. When I have fallen on the odd occasion I generally only use 1 stick in my left hand to lift myself but hold the other stick midway down the shaft in my right so it is ready to be used quickly if I need it.

    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • sam12
    sam12 Posts: 1,338 Member
    I was diagnosed with leg weakness neuro didnt say which leg am certain my right leg. Dr goin to get me walking stick unsteady cause I busted mine cause of the effect of withdrawal.
  • elly9
    elly9 Member Posts: 17 Connected
    I have been using crutches for the last 7 years (before I had both hips replaced ) as couldn’t walk unaided and was in horrific pain. Since having hips replaced I still have to use them for support as scar tissue from having disc removed some years ago has caused me to shrink and so I cannot stand for more than a few seconds as my back tends to pull me Down and press on all my nerves. I use a walking stick indoors as I have other things to hold on to as well. It’s very frustrating as I can’t do much anymore. I use a mobility scooter as well at times and fortunately I can still drive but have to have scooter etc with me if I go anywhere. 
  • Jean_OT
    Jean_OT Member Posts: 513 Pioneering
    Hi @CockneyRebel
    moving two sticks together or moving them individually are both valid techniques taught by physiotherapists, it really does depend on your individual needs and what you find comfortable. In reality people often use different techniques at different times. If you need some guidance your GP should make a physio referral for you, although we all know that waiting lists for an appointment can be horrendously long. Here is a link to the basic general info issued by the NHS:  https://www.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/OP-103.15-Safety-information-leaflet-walking-sticks.pdf
    Best Wishes

    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

  • elly9
    elly9 Member Posts: 17 Connected
    I’ve been using crutches for 7 years reason being i couldn’t stand up or walk without them. Then after 2 years I ended up having both hips replaced because they had both worn out. Because of-this and having previous surgery for disc removal I still have to use them or a walking stick indoors, (as have furniture to hold onto), as my back now degenerated more, because of the waiting to have hips diagnosed.im used to it now and I still drive but have to use my mobility scooter if going round shops etc 
  • newborn
    newborn Member Posts: 724 Pioneering
    Perhaps suggest never use sticks or crutches for too long without adding shock absorbing ferrules.   And think about swapping to gutter before too long, so you don't hurt your hands, wrists, elbows.   

    Think too, if there's a lot of weight bearing, or distance, or balance is poor,  of buying a gutter wheeled walker e.g.a T *pr*  Tr*j*
  • TheArctic
    TheArctic Member Posts: 8 Listener
    I move my crutches in the diagonal fashion. When taking a step forward, I move the opposite crutch forward and so on. I could choose to put both crutches forward an then taking a step. Either way works. I have some really nice crutches called Ergobaum. They are built to reduce strain on shoulders and wrists. http://www.mytravelmobility.co.uk/ergobaum/ 

    They have a hefty price tag, but I think my shoulders are worth it. I have removed the knee rests, as they are of no use to me. 
  • chrisvanf
    chrisvanf Member Posts: 63 Courageous
    Hi @CockneyRebel.
    I use a left handed stick when in my apartment and swing through two crutches when out n about sometimes weight-bearing sometimes not depends on pain level  
    Edited, re-edited, bits added, bits taken out spellchecked then edited again, 
  • Circe
    Circe Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    I use a half staff  tried old lady sticks anf and was OK but didn't feel supported and was bending, mot fmgiid for a spinal conditions. I have used full quarterstaff too but the recent half one I have is great as I'm not a tall woman. I only use it when I on a high pain day or a day I can't feel my right leg. I alternate using it and not using it. I do however feel more sturdy with it. 


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