There is a need to get the best crutch alternatives when you, at times, do not wish to make use of crutches as your mobility aid.
Though crutches are most popular when you need to keep your weight off the injured foot, be it a broken foot or knee.
There will always be some moment you wish to balance yourself on other things apart from crutches. Then you will need other mobility aid which can serve well as an alternative to crutches.
Crutch alternatives have their advantage and disadvantage. So we decide to educate you on it, bring some suggestion of other mobility aid that can be in place of crutches.
What is the Best Mobility aid that can serve as an alternative to Crutches?
A particular product cannot be pointed out to be the best alternative to crutches. This is why we talk extensively about this subject in this article, to give you the knowledge needed to select which is the best alternative to crutches for you.
We are talking about three crutch alternatives, and the one you go for will depend on preference and the condition of your injury. Though crutches are the most preferred for non-weight bearing, these products give that support you need for mobility.
Alternative to Crutches for Broken Ankle, Foot Injury, knee surgery
Knee scooters are a great alternative to crutches. It offers excellent balance and makes your mobility to be very easy and even faster than using a crutch.
Knee scooters require you to balance your affected leg on the bike while you ride anywhere you wish to go. Knee scooters are not an excellent choice for knee injury or any other part around the thigh, and hips. These parts will bear your weight, so you need it to be very strong.
If your foot or the ankle is injured, then it might be an excellent choice for you. Also, your other unaffected leg must be in excellent condition as you will need it to propel yourself forward.
Knee walker is best for ankle injuries and should not be considered for knee injury or any other upper limb injury. It is a great device that can be gotten instead of crutches only if the above conditions stated are met.
Read: Best rollator walker
Limitation of Knee Scooters
1. Knee Scooters Are Not Suitable For Stairs
Knee walker or scooters cannot be used to climb stairs or come down from it. They are not built or suitable for that purpose.
Its design makes it unsuitable for stairs but can be used in an elevator. Trying to use it on stairs might result in an accident and must be avoided entirely.
2. Knee Crutch Put More Stress on the Healthy Foot
To walk on a scooter, you need more of the healthy foot to navigate well. The healthy foot is used in propelling the entire body forward. This put a lot of strain on this leg.
Staying on the leg on a scooter for a long time is stressful, and the constant kicking of the other leg on the ground to propel you forward can even be a whole high level of stress on your foot.
It has been proven that so many knee scooter users sustain torn muscle due to extended or overuse of it. It is a significant limitation for this product.
3. Risk of Falling – Knee Scooters Require Much Balance
A knee scooter requires a high level of balance. While using a knee crutch, one leg is on the crutch pad in an upright position, and you need to balance well to avoid fall.
You have to be very careful and be mindful of balance while using scooters. I am sure you do not want to suffer a fall that can worsen your injury or create a new one for you.
See more: Best rollator walker with seat
iWalk hands-free crutch is an adorable alternative to crutches. They require you to be very active and strong to make use of this product.
iWalk works like a second leg. It is attached to the injured leg to take away the weight of the body from the injured foot.
The product is suitable for lower limb injury – ankle and knee. It should not be considered for hip or thigh injury. Also, it is not a suitable product for above-knee amputees.
Wheelchairs are best when both legs are injured. Every other walking aid like crutches, scooters, and walker require one active and robust leg.
What happens when you cannot put your body weight on both legs? This is when you need a wheelchair to help you navigate correctly until you fully recover. See more about the best lightweight transport wheelchair.
Wheelchairs are used by people who cannot walk at all. It goes beyond injured legs; it is an excellent device for mobility and one of the best alternatives to crutches.
Top 7 Alternatives to Crutch for Broken ankle and Foot Injury
iWalk 2.0 is a hands-free crutch that acts more like a second leg. With this support, you do not need to stress yourself, holding anything like the case of crutches and scooters. Your hands are free to do other stuff.
iWalk ensures you stay active as you recover. It is good and one of the best crutch alternatives. Most crutches slow you down, and you can get your life back using this product.
Though it is a great product but does not fit everyone, it has some essential requirements, and you must meet them before you consider this product.
These requirements are: injury must be below the knee, average strength and balance, ability to walk appropriately before the injury, weight less than 275 pounds, not excessively overweight, and height between 4’10” – 6’6 “
It is an excellent mobility aid for non-weight bearing either in the ankle or knee. It is light in weight to enhance easy carriage and comfort.
It gives you hands-free, pain-free functional mobility and the opportunity to go about your daily activities without feeling disabled.
- Product Weight: 24.8 lbs.
- Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
- Knee Support Height Range: 16″ – 22.5″
- Knee pad: 7″ width x 12.5″ length
- Front Axle Width: 17.5″
- Rear Drum Brakes
- Wire Basket: 8″ x 12″ x 8.5″
This is a good crutch alternative that is very suitable for ankle or lower leg injury, after surgery of the foot and below knee amputee.
It is one of the best knee walkers which serves the best purpose for crutch alternatives. It offers a great balance when in use, with its four wheels; it stands perfectly and balances well when moving with it.
The knee scooter is a very stable one with high maneuverability. It offers an advanced automotive style tie-rod steering mechanism.
The product is suitable for all floor types, both indoor and outdoor. It is perfect for all-terrain with its 7.5 inches Solid Polyurethane Rubber Wheels.
Comfort is also guaranteed through the thick 3.5 inches knee platform. The knee platform is designed to contour along with the knee for maximum support and comfort.
It is also very versatile as it can be used for both right and left foot. It is straightforward to use and store. While travelling, it features a removable front axle and handlebars with a quick folding mechanism. This makes it easy to store as well without taking much space in the home.
It is fully adjustable to accommodate a user with heights between 4’9″ – 6’6″ and a weight capacity of 300 pounds. It has an adjustable locking hand brake and rear drum brake that provides immediate stopping ability and control.
See also: Bariatric Rollator Walker
- Product Weight: 23.4 lbs.
- Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
- Patient Height Range: 5′ to 6’5″
- Wheel Size: 8 inches
- Colour: Black
- Hand brake
- Wire Basket: 8″ x 12″ x 8.5″
The knee walker is also one of the best crutch alternatives to consider for ankle and foot injuries and other non-weight bearing injuries.
It is the ideal knee walker for people recovering from a broken foot, broken ankle, broken leg, foot surgery, or ankle surgery. It is very versatile for both indoor and outdoor purposes.
It also has four-wheel systems for proper navigation and balances with its 8 inches rubber wheel. The wheel can be changed to ELENKER inflatable big wheels that are recommended if you will be using it on the uneven outdoor road for a long time.
The knee walker is foldable to enhance secure storage and makes it suitable for travelling purpose. It is also adjustable to accommodate a wide range of user’s height.
It has a maximum weight carrying capacity of 300 pounds, it is light in weight weighing 23.4 pounds, and its knee pad can be adjusted to your preference for maximum support and comfort.
The knee pad is made with soft and comfortable rubber padding. It evenly distributes pressure. It can relieve pain, reduces friction and skin irritation for comfortable everyday use.
Its maneuvering is effortless and also stable while using it. It has an excellent control system. The steerable knee scooter walker offers an adjustable locking handbrake and rear brake.
See also: Best 3-wheel rolling walker
#4. Drive Medical Aluminum Rollator Fold Up and Removable Back Support, Padded Seat with 7.5-Inch Casters
- Handle Height: 33”-38″
- Seat Dimensions: 12″(D) x 14″(W) x 23″(H)
- Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
Rollators are best used by folks that can walk but need a little support to maintain balance. They are quite popular among older adults and people recovering from injuries and have healed to an extent they can walk.
Drive Medical Aluminum Rollator is one of the best and an excellent crutch alternative. Apart from supporting you for great balance, it can also be used as a seat.
The handle is made with a soft pad, and it evenly balances the pressure on the palm. The break is also on the handle and can be used to control the speed of the roller walker.
To use it as a chair, press the brake handle down until it stays. This immobilizes the wheel to ensure you do not fall while you seat. It also has back support which is removable for perfect comfort.
It has a seamless padded seat and a zippered pouch underneath the seat for added privacy and security of personal items. Rollers should not be considered for non-weight bearing; it only acts as a support to maintain balance while walking.
It has four-wheel systems with 7.5 inches in diameter. It is suitable for both indoor and outdoor purposes. The easy-to-use deluxe loop locks and Brakes with serrated edges provide a firm hold.
The product can be folded for secure storage and travelling. It is an excellent mobility aid and the best to get for your old parent.
- Overall Product Length: 16.75 inches
- Overall Product Width: 25 inches
- Total Product Height: 32 inches
- Actual Product Weight: 7 lbs.
- Product Weight Carrying Capacity: 350 lbs.
- Width Inside Back Legs: 20.75 inches
- Inside Hand Grip Width: 18 inches
- Adjustable Height: 32-39 inches
- Base Depth: 16.75 inches
This is also an excellent walker you can consider for non-weight bearing if you do not want a crutch. It is a perfect product that can support you and aid your movement after a broken ankle, knee surgery or any other injuries.
The handle is newly installed with a soft contoured handgrip. This evenly distributes pressure on the palm and ensures better comfort while in use.
The product is built to have two wheels in the front while the two legs at the rear end are fixed with glide caps. The glide caps allows use on all type of floors.
Its trigger release that helps in the control of the walker is just beneath the handgrip. This ensures you don’t have to remove your hand from the handle to effectively control the walker.
It is also adjustable to accommodate a wide range of user’s height. Also, it is affordable compared to other walkers as the price is below $50.
- Weight capacity: 300 pounds
- seat dimensions: 18.5”w x 15.75”d
- Seat height: 20.”
- Opened overall width: 25.75.”
- Product weight: 27 lb.
- Back height from seat: 17.75.”
- Arm height from seat: 10.5”.
Wheelchairs are the best option when you hurt your both legs, making a non-weight bearing an essential thing pending your recovery.
They are also used for people that have suffered some permanent disability and cannot walk on their own. It is an excellent choice for mobility for those set of people.
This product is light in weight and foldable, making it an excellent choice for travelling and storage. It will not take too much space in your home.
It can be used on all-terrain with its 12” rugged rear wheels. It also comes with secondary wheel locks and removable Anti-Tippers and NOVA’s patented locking hand brakes for added safety.
It has an adjustable seat belt to hold you firmly and a small storage pouch to keep your things like keys, cell phones, and other little gadgets.
The footrests are easy to remove and fix. They can be easily adjusted to suit your height perfectly.
- Product Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
- Closed Width: 12 inches
- Seat Width: 18 inches
- Seat Depth: 16-18 inches
- Seat to Floor Height: 17.5-19.5 inches
- Back of Chair Height: 16 inches
- Seat to Armrest Height: 8 inch
- Armrest Length: 14 inches
- Armrest to Floor Height: 27.5 inches
- Rear Wheels: 24 x 1 inch
- Brakes: Push-To-Lock Wheel Brakes
Drive medical wheelchair is a good one to consider for traveling. It is one of the best for mobility for non-weight bearing in both legs.
The construction is very sturdy as it is made with carbon steel. It can also be folded to a compact size for secure storage.
It also has a flip back armrest style and front rigging option. The product has been customer’s choice with lots of positive customers’ reviews with over 600 reviews and a rating of 4.3 of 5 stars on Amazon.
There are three sizes available to choose – 16, 18 and 20 inches. Endeavor to read the specification for each size to choose correctly.
Recommended: Best folding crutches
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a knee scooter better than crutches?
We cannot categorically tell you which is better. Taking a critical look at how both are built and what they do, both products have their peculiarities and situations they fit more.
For example, you cannot use a scooter to climb the stair but a crutch will be just fine for that purpose. Also, when you need something to carry you faster, crutches might be slower than a scooter.
Furthermore, a scooter is never recommended for above the knee injury. You will have to place one knee on the knee pad of a scooter while the other leg is used to push it forward. So, scooters are perfect for below the knee injuries but crutches will just be fine for such purpose.
In choosing the best crutch alternatives, you need to understand the peculiarity of the injury and know what will suit it most. We recommend having both crutch and one best alternative so make you easily switch as need demands.
What is a hands-free crutch?
This is a crutch alternative that leaves your hand free while using it. Most people prefer it because it gives them the freedom to make use of their hands for other things instead of having to struggle with a crutch or other medical movement aid.
What is the difference between a walker and a rollator?
The difference between a walker and a rollator is the wheel. A roller has four wheels, brake for control, a seat and a roller does not need you to lift it. Rollators are very easy to move around and the wheels swivel perfectly to every direction you needed it.
For a walker, you have to lift it and transfer your weight on it just like crutches for non-weight bearing. A walker can be difficult to navigate but they are more useful for balance than a rollator. Its four legs are placed on the ground and do not have wheels like a rollator.
Rollators should be considered as a crutch alternatives if you only need little balance and space to seat intermittently as you move. Rollators are not the best option for non-weight bearing.
Which are the best crutch alternatives for a knee injury and surgery?
For knee injury, definitely, a knee scooter will not be a great option. The best option is hands-free. A walker can also be a good choice.
Which are the best crutch alternatives for an ankle injury and surgery?
For an ankle injury, we strongly recommend a scooter, walker or hand-free crutch like iWalker 2.0. Which you choose will now depend on the circumstances around you but all of them are good for an ankle injury.
Getting the best crutches is very important but for those who suck at crutches, crutch alternatives are just a perfect escape or solution.
A knee scooter, hands-free crutches, and walkers have been the most popular alternative to crutches. They give you some options that a crutch will not give and they are quite better in some situations than crutches.
We have reviewed six products and we can tell you to go for any of them only after you understand how and when each one is used. It is not enough to just buy a product without knowing when and how they are used.
Among our reviewed products, we see iWalker.2.0 as the best crutch alternatives. This is because it suits more non-weight bearing injuries. If all the prerequisites are satisfied which we stated in the review, we recommend you go for it.
Lastly, the advice of your doctor is golden. As much we try to give a comprehensive guide, we highly recommend you visit your doctor to properly analyze your condition to know which is best for you among the products.