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Although we believe the foundation to a successful knee recovery is swelling control and early knee range of motion, having the ability to walk safely and correctly is important.
The strengthening, balance, flexibility, and core strengthening exercises that we provide in this program will certainly help with your ability to walk. However, there are specific gait, or walking, exercises that will help.
You may be encouraged by your healthcare provider to use an assistive device following a surgical procedure. The intention may be to reduce pressure on your surgical leg or to aid in balance to avoid falling. The three most common assistive devices used to help with walking are walkers, crutches and canes. Below are short videos that will instruct you on adjusting the assistive device appropriately for your height, as well as how to use the assistive device properly.
We also encourage the use of an assistive device to aid in your ability to walk without a limp. It is critical to attempt to walk without a limp. Walking with a limp is not beneficial. This can create bad habits and overtime can not only aggravate your affected knee, but also other joints in your body.
By the time people seek to get help for their knee condition, either operatively or non-operatively, It is typical to see them walking with a limp. A limp is very counterproductive and can be hard to reverse-taking patience and time. Walking with a limp is inefficient and may cause issues with your back, other knee, or hips. Initially, especially after surgery, starting with a walker or 2 crutches is typical. The goal is to walk normally with the aid (walker, 1 or 2 crutches, or cane) assisting in this goal. For example, if you start on a walker, then focus on a normal gait pattern until you can walk without a limp. Once you are able to walk without a limp with a walker, try a cane. But only when you are able to walk normally with a cane. If you try a cane and limp, then use the walker a bit longer and try again at a later date. Only progress from the cane to nothing when you are able to walk without a limp. The same holds true for crutches. Start with 2 crutches. When you are able to walk in a normal gait pattern with 2 crutches then progress to one (only if you are able to use 1 crutch without limping).