Using Crutches on Stairs

Hi, I'm Doctor Jo, a licensed Physical Therapist and Doctor of Physical Therapy. I hope you enjoy my video demos of stretches & exercises for common injuries and syndromes. Be safe. Have fun. And I hope you feel better soon.

Using crutches on stairs or steps can be very scary. So here are a few tips to help you get safely up and down the stairs with crutches.

You might be using two crutches and non-weight bearing (NWB) on one side, partial weight bearing (PWB) with two crutches, or PWB with one crutch. 

The first thing to remember when climbing stairs with crutches is always go up with your good leg, and down with your bad leg. A way to remember is: “The good go to heaven, the bad go to hell.” This applies even if you are non-weight bearing with crutches and hopping up and down the stairs.

The best thing to do is practice going up and down on one step with the crutches until you feel comfortable, and have someone with you if you can when you first try it. When using two crutches, they always go with the bad leg.

When you go down to one crutch, the crutch or cane goes on the opposite side of the bad leg, and all the same rules apply.

Related Videos:

How to Use Crutches Correctly

How to Use a Cane

 


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