How to measure for a cane

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Measuring for a caneA frequently asked question is, what height should my cane be? The answer to the correct measurement and fitting of canes is not determined by how tall you are, but by the distance between your hand and the ground. Physiotherapists recommend the following method of determining the correct height:

The cane user should stand upright, in the type of shoes they usually wear, with their arms hanging naturally by their sides. Another person should turn the cane upside down, so that the handle is resting on the floor. Positioning the cane next to the user, make a small mark on the shaft of the cane level with the bump at the bottom of the wrist bone. Using a small saw, cut the cane at this point. This will mean that the user’s arm will be slightly bent at the elbow when they hold the cane, and their shoulder will be level. A cane that is too long will force the shoulder unnaturally high. A cane that is too short will force the user to stoop.

If the cane user is not present, for example if they are buying their cane by mail order or through the internet, they can determine how long their cane should be by asking another person to measure the distance from their wrist bone to the floor. The user should ensure they are standing correctly i.e. standing upright, in the type of shoes they usually wear, with their arms hanging naturally by their sides.

Please note that this information is a guide only. Talk to your doctor or physio for medical input.