Read How To Properly Fit Crutches to ensure you are ready to start walking with crutches. Once ready, hold the top of the crutches against your sides and use your hands to absorb the weight. Do not put any weight into the armpits as this could result in nerve damage.
If you are not allowed to put any weight through one of your legs:
- Begin by standing with crutches at your side 4-6 inches outside of your feet.
- Advance both crutches and non-weight bearing leg forward.
- Put weight through crutches and move the ”good” leg forward past the crutches.
Progressing from two crutches to one crutch:
- Hold the crutch on the non-involved or “good” side;
- Advance the involved/injured leg and crutch on opposite side at the same time;
- Place weight through crutch and advance “good” leg forward.
* When transitioning to one crutch, you will not need to make any changes to crutch size.
Your physical therapist can ensure that you are safe while training on your crutches. They may train you in how to fit crutches, help determine appropriate weight bearing status, how to walk with appropriate gait pattern, and how to go up and down stairs. Some doctors may recommend you learn to walk on crutches before surgery.