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How to Walk with a Cane?

Shweta Chaubey

Canes are extremely valuable mobility devices. They assist with walking safely when one is dealing with serious pain, injury, or weakness.

One may use a cane while recovering from surgery or a stroke. Seniors may need to use walking canes for the long term. Whatever the duration of using a cane, it is always better to learn the correct way to use a cane.

Walking canes are essential for elderly individuals to walk with adequate safety, balance, and support. However, if you are new to using a cane, you need to learn how to use a walking cane correctly. When used correctly, a cane can help improve steadiness and balance. A walking cane widens the support base and eases the pressure placed on the lower body, thus reducing the chances of falling.

How to use a Walking Cane?

To use a cane properly hold the cane on the side of your leg that does not need support. While walking on level ground, move the cane forward in unison with the injured or affected leg and place weight on it as required. Using a cane for balance and stability is not that easy for a newbie, but with practice comes precision.

  • Hold the cane in one hand (opposite the side that requires support.)
  • Position the cane a little to the side and an inch or two forward.
  • Move the cane forward simultaneously as you take steps forward with your good leg.
  • Hold the cane steadily as you walk with your leg that does not need support. You can also ask somebody to supervise or possibly help support or stabilize you while you get comfortable using the cane. Stay confident before you start venturing on your own.

Climbing Stairs

When climbing stairs exercise extra caution and when navigating steps or a curb with a cane.

  • Hold the handrail tightly for support.
  • If only one of your legs needs help and the other works just fine, take a step first with your healthy leg.
  • Then, move forward with your injured leg and cane.
  • To climb down the stairs, put the cane on the lower step first.
  • Then, step forward with the affected leg, followed by the unaffected leg.

Sitting in a chair

  • Always look out for a chair that has armrests.
  • Position yourself in front of the chair. Make sure the edge of the seat touches the backs of your legs.
  • If you use a single-tip cane, keep one hand on the cane and the other hand on the armrest.
  • Then gently lower down into the chair.

Knee Surgery

After knee surgery, the patient needs to stay active during rehabilitation. One may need a cane for assistance to do physical therapy exercises. Physical exercise is required to rebuild strength and balance. Rehab therapists help patients learn how to get out of bed, reach the bathroom, and perform other activities after surgery. They also guide patients in improving their range of motion.

Hip Pain

One may need to use a cane while recovering from hip replacement surgery or injury. They can also do exercises to strengthen their back, core, and lower body.

Fall Prevention

When walking on waxed floors, slippery rugs, or wet surfaces, exercise extra care. Along with the right cane, wear supportive shoes with nonslip rubber soles. Additionally, use new rubber tips for the cane as the old ones can wear out with usage.

Word of Advice

Use a quad cane. As the name suggests, a quad cane has four tips that offer a wider base for extra support, stability, and balance. However, they are a little cumbersome, and one may find it more challenging to navigate. Before buying a quad cane, consider whether you are adept at operating this type of cane. Subsequently, while using a quad cane on the stairs, you may want to turn the cane to the side so that it will fit on the stairs easily.

To sit down in a chair using a quad cane, keep holding the cane in one hand and place the other hand on the armrest. Gently lower yourself into the chair and make yourself comfortable.


Where can I find the best canes?

Health Products For You is your one-stop-shop for all your health and wellness needs. Since 2002, we have been making health and wellness accessible to everyone. Find the best canes at the most affordable prices and make your life easier while increasing mobility!


Disclaimer: All content found on our website, including images, videos, infographics and text were created solely for informational purposes. Our content should never be used for the purpose of diagnosis or treatment of any medical conditions. Content shared on our websites is not meant to be used as a substitute for advice from a certified medical professional. Reliance on the information provided on our website as a basis for patient treatment is solely at your own risk. We urge all our customers to always consult a physician or a certified medical professional before trying or using a new medical product.


HPFY Shweta Chaubey

Shweta Chaubey

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Shweta Chaubey, has been a Health Products For You contributor since 2021. An advocate-turned-writer, her desire to create meaningful and positive content has brought her to HPFY and what better than writing ...

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