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Fitting Your Crutches


Welcome to our health education library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

Proper fitting helps you use your crutches safely and effectively. When fitting crutches, stand up straight and wear the shoes you will normally use to walk. If the crutches don't feel right, ask your doctor, nurse, or physical therapist (PT) to check the fit.

To check fit: Place the tips 2 inches in front and 6 inches to the side.

Getting to Know Your Crutches

Crutches are often used for injuries to the knee, ankle, foot, or hip. Using crutches requires good coordination, balance, and upper body strength. If you're using only one crutch, keep it on the unaffected (uninjured) side unless told otherwise.

The Crutches Fit If:

 You can put 2 to 3 fingers between your armpit and the top of the axillary pad.

 Your arms are slightly bent at the elbows when your hands are on the handgrips.

 Your wrists are even with the handgrips when your arms hang at your sides.


 Crutches should have nonskid rubber tips to prevent slipping. Change tips that look worn.

 Don't let armpits rest on the pads-this can cause tingling, numbness, and loss of muscle strength.

 Don't use crutches that are too short or mismatched. They can cause back pain and falls.

 In wet weather, dry crutch tips when coming indoors.

Contact Wisconsin River Orthopaedic Institute at 715.201.3624 for your orthopaedic needs. For your convenience, you can fill out our online Request an Appointment form to book your consultation.

Wisconsin River Orthopaedics
140 24th Street South
Wisconsin Rapids, WI 54494
Phone: 715-201-3624
Office Hours

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