Why does using the crutch fatigue or hurt my good leg or hip?
For most people, pain or fatigue in the unaffected leg is due to two possible issues:
- Incorrect adjustment. Proper fit is everything. The crutch needs to become an extension of your leg, which means height (both above the knee platform and below it), vertical alignment and proper strap tension (tight) need to be correct. We show you how to achieve this in our instruction video, shown here.
- Another common issue is not fully committing your weight to the crutch. This typically happens during learning, and goes away when you gain proficiency. In normal human gait, 40% of the time you are putting all your weight on only one foot. This happens when you ‘toe-off’ with your back foot and bring it back to the front. At this point, you have all your weight committed to the other foot. When using the crutch, it’s normal for beginners to not commit all their weight, and they rush to get the good foot back on the ground. This over-recruits the good leg, which can result in unnatural gait adaptations, which, in turn, recruits muscles that are normally dormant or lightly utilised during normal gait. This can cause fatigue or pain.
The iWALK2.0 works best if you treat it like it’s a normal leg. The less you try to adapt, the better it works. You need to trust it. With time and increased proficiency, your gait will become more normal, and the fatigue and/or pain will diminish.