Chronic Illness

Smart Crutches

I use a variety of mobility aids, a power chair, manual wheelchair, and crutches. I use crutches a little less than I do the power chair or manual wheelchair, mainly because my wrists couldn’t handle the pressure I put on them when walking with a crutch, then I discovered smart crutches. I’d been vaguely aware of them for a while but I’d never really looked into how they could help me or how available they were, so after struggling with continual wrist pain from using my standard crutches for even five minutes, I decided to get googling. It was thanks to several blog post reviews that I decided to take the plunge and splurge on a crutch, so I thought I’d write a review too in the hope of being able to help someone else decide if Smart Crutch was for them.

So lets start at the beginning; where do these crutches come from? Smart Crutch UK. An easy to use site that makes buying the right crutch simple.

How much do they cost? For the adult, both midi and maxi, crutches they’ll cost you £74.99 for one or £114.98 for a pair.

Are they available in any colours? Yes! Unlike ‘standard’ crutches you can choose from 11 different colours. As you can see, I went for zebra stripes, it seemed particularly fitting seeing as I have ehlers-danlos syndrome.

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Do the crutches come in different heights? Crutches are in three categories, junior, midi and maxi, within each category, you can choose from different height options, as well as asking you to include your forearm length to allow the cuff to fit you comfortably. The crutches are also height adjustable in the same way that hospital crutches are, so different shoes don’t stop you from being able to use them.

I was eager to write up a review of my crutch but wanted to leave myself plenty of time to use it, see how much I liked using it and how my body reacted to it, so the crutch arrived on the 10th July and I’m finally writing this on 1st November. I’ve been using my standard hospital issued crutches on and off since 2012 so I certainly had plenty of practice with those, but I’d been able to use them less and less recently as my wrists became weaker and more painful, particularly when trying to use the standard crutches. During the time I’ve been using my smart crutch, I’ve never felt the pain in my wrist, or been left with pain for days after use, the handles themselves are more comfortable and the fact that the weight is being distributed throughout my entire forearm means my wrist isn’t under any strain. It also helps that there isn’t any strain going through my shoulders when using the crutch, this is a huge thing for me as my shoulders are my weakest and most painful joints. Another bonus is that they don’t allow my elbows to hyper extend, which seems to naturally happen with hospital crutches. When the crutch(es) arrives, it also comes with foam pads to add to both the comfort of the arm cuff, but also to help to fit it your forearm a little better, I like that not only is the crutch designed for comfort as well as practicality, but that they’re also finding ways of adding in extra comfort. Extra foam pads are available on their site too, particularly useful if you small arms!

The arm of the crutch can be locked to a range of different angles, again allowing for extra comfort, but also letting you set it to suit your own needs so that you don’t cause discomfort or aggravate any painful joints. It also helps to adjust slightly depending on height, one angle in flat shoes can be perfect but can end up being a nightmare in heels.

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Normally bad weather would mean being stuck in the house as ice and crutches can be a pretty disastrous combination. Smart Crutch have found a way to solve this by making pop-on ice boots and covers to make trips out safer, both inside and out. Whilst I haven’t had need to purchase this yet, thank goodness seeing as it was summer, I’m already so glad to know that these are available. I wish my crutches had had this function throughout the last six years, at least I’d have been able to get from the car to the house or car to the shop rather than being stuck in the house.

My final comment on my smart crutch is that it is so flipping cute compared to my standard grey pair. I feel comfortable and confident going out of the house with this crutch, it’s an accessory to me now, I love it, and I feel like that’s almost as important as how helpful I’ve found the crutch too.

Have you used a smart crutch? Or maybe you’ve considered buying one? Are there any other mobility aids that you recommend trying out?

Amie xxx

 

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