Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Correct Cane Techniques Handout

Happy 2013 friends! How about starting out this new year with a new post from our dear mobility friend, Jessica? She made a handout for one of her teams so that they would know how to all work together to help their student with correct cane technique. I was helping her take pictures for her mobility handout and knew I smelled a win win post idea so with her permission, here it is! It's three easy lessons (with pictures!) and it is perfect for getting everyone up to speed with mobility needs.

Correct Cane Technique 101
by Jessica Eichfeld, COMS

Lesson 1: Index Finger Grasp and Arm Position
Index Finger Grasp: with cane in desired hand, student places index finger along the flat side with the other fingers and thumb wrapped around the grip. Should be holding cane towards the middle of the grip.

Arm Position: Arm should be extended at mid-line about waist height. Good checking point is the belly button.

Lesson 2: Cane Arc
Cane arc: The reason behind holding the cane midline is so the individual will cover both sides of the body equally. The width of the cane arc is 2” beyond widest part of the body which is typically the shoulders. When walking behind your student you should be able to see the cane moving from side to side, if you can not see the cane while walking behind then they do not have a wide enough arc. 

*It is a wrist movement not an arm movement. Unless wrist movement is limited.

Lesson 3: In-rhythm and In-step
In-rhythm: The cane moves ‘in-rhythm’ with the student’s feet. “Every time you take a step you move the cane to the right and left.” Tip: using two-point touch (tapping the cane side to side) helps create a rhythm they can hear.

In-Step: In order to stay in-step the student must first be in-rhythm. In-step means that the cane moves with the opposite foot. For example when the student steps forward with their right foot the cane moves to the left. This allows for more space between the foot and the cane, giving them more time to react to drop-offs and obstacles.

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