How to adjust your crutches to match your height

Written by rebecca mayglothling | 13/05/2017
How to adjust your crutches to match your height
Crutches are easily adjustable. (Crutches image by Megan van Dyck from

Proper crutch height reduces further injury through use of crutches. Adjusting crutches should take place when you get the crutches, but some crutches will need to be readjusted. Crutches can also be retained for future injuries, and they can be passed from person to person, so knowledge concerning crutch adjustment should be an integral part of crutch ownership.

Place the crutch tips squarely on the floor, 15 cm (6 inches) from your feet. Hang your arms loosely over the top of the crutches.

Move the crutch up or down so the top aligns with the top of the ribcage, approximately 2.5 to 5 cm (1 to 2 inches) below the armpit. Wooden crutches typically come with a wing nut and screw near the bottom so the height can be adjusted. Aluminium crutches typically come with a leg that slides up and down with a spring-loaded pin to hold the leg in place.

Adjust the hand grips up or down so your elbows are slightly bent when holding the crutches. These typically are adjusted the same way as the legs.


Using crutches with your armpits resting on the crutch is not recommended. There are many nerves in your armpit area, and using the crutches in this area can cause numbness and tingling in your hands.

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