Neuro Café 18th May 2022 by Linda S
See the slides in LEGS Members' Area for details.
What are Walking Aids?
Anything which improves walking patterns, balance or safety while allowing you to move independently. There are a huge range to choose from. You can test these out in mobility shops.
Why use a Walking Aid?
Walking aids can
help with walking and mobilising independently
increase stability and confidence
give awareness to people around you so they may slow down or offer help
help build endurance
There are various types of crutches and techniques to use them. Please see slides.
There are different types of walking sticks and they need to fit you.
As a guide, your wrist bone should be level with top of the stick.
You could use Nordic Walking poles to encourage you to stand higher.
Sticks with 3 or 4 legs will help stability.
Places like the Complete Care Shop have a range of aids.
Nordic walking poles may be worth a try: they are lightweight, help to activate core.
Accessories for walking sticks
Holders and magnetic holders are available
Lights/lasers can help to guide you
Try Metal spike- like crampons for ice and snow
Often these are in nice colours
A Flexyfoot ferrule can be useful.
There are many different types. A Kaye Walker is a walker which supports you from behind .
A walker can help keep you upright and feel safer walking outside.
- Seat, brakes, basket
- Adaptations such as having brakes to one side.
The Remap charity can help ensure the walker is right for you, with accessories, weighted frames, caddies.
Check maximum load
Check for damage, wear and tear
Is there any Influence on your waking posture from your walking aid?
Comments from LEGS people
I hired a mobility scooter on holiday but after a while found I lost some ability to walk. It can be difficult to get around if you do not drive a car.
I have a rare kind of MS and as t teenager I did not want to use aids. I kept falling with no warning, got up and was fine. However, 2 years ago I fell, glasses went in my eye and I nearly lost my vision. So I started using a stick which has changed my life. It has given me more confidence & independence
I used a walking stick and was able to move from inside to outside. The stick was carefully measured at the hospital. I had a Flexyfoot ferrule which was very useful. I also found an interesting sword stick but discovered it was illegal!
I used a standard walking stick on the tube and it was so slippery I nearly fell. A Flexyfoot ferrule helped stop it from slipping and also provided some shock absorption for my hand
We all need to tune in to our own health beliefs. What is right for one person won't necessarily work for another. Equipment use can be affected by our emotions and what we need as individuals.