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Phone: 800-414-2358

Fax: 718-946-6727

Phone: 800-414-2358

Fax: 718-946-6727

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How to Properly Use a Walker

Use this guide to learn the best ways to use your mobility aid, to avoid collisions, navigate uneven terrain, and get the most out of your device.

Standing  and Beginning  to Walk

When standing, follow these guidelines:

  • push up against the chair’s armrests, using both elbows and wrists.  
  • firmly grab your walker by the handles
  • push the walker slightly forward
  • step with the weaker limb first, transferring most of your body weight to your arms
  • step forward with your strongest leg, staying close to your walker. Take care as you step, keeping an eye out for obstacles. Try not to overload your healing limb. Remember, putting too much pressure and load onto your healing leg may cause unwanted trauma.

Turning

The key to successful turning with your walker is to engage your whole body, using your upper body to lead and taking small steps in the direction you wish to go. Avoid overloading your weakened or recovering limb.

Sitting

Stand in front of your chair, and slowly walk backward until you feel the chair seat against your legs. Reach for the armrest on your stronger side first, supporting your weight as you grasp the other armrest and slowly lower yourself into the chair.

Preventing Falls

Take these extra safety precautions to prevent falls:

  • Keep your home, especially your floors, clean and clutter-free
  • Rearrange small furniture so it is out of the way
  • Make sure your walker is in good working condition
  • Make your home environment safer by installing slip-free flooring and grab bars
  • Do not wax your floors
  • Choose footwear that provides balance and reduces tripping risk

Visit your physician on a regular basis and follow their advice about your activities of daily living. Reducing or eliminating some activities may speed healing.  

Navigating Curbs

While most city sidewalks feature ramps at intersections, it is not always possible to avoid a curb. Follow these pointers to successfully navigate street curbs:

  1. To avoid falling, draw as close to the curb as possible, lift your walker upward and place it firmly on the sidewalk.
  2. Use your arms to push firmly down on your walker handles as you step onto the curb.
  3. Step up with your strongest limb first.
  4. Follow up with your weaker limb, moving forward slowly until your regain your balance.

Descending a Curb

Approach the curb and carefully move your walker off the curb, keeping it as close as possible. Place your hands firmly on the walker handles and support your weight is you step down with your weaker limb. Follow with your stronger leg, being careful to regain your balance before you begin walking again.

 

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