Using a Walking Stick or Cane for Back Pain

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Using a walking stick for back pain

Several years ago, I started using a walking stick for back pain when I was recovering from spinal stenosis.  In this post, I will discuss my experience using a walking stick and share how this helped me get around a little easier.  If you struggle with back pain and are looking for a good way to be on the move, please keep reading.

I have been dealing with back problems for about 20 years.  Late in 2015, I was doing some stupid things at the gym and I blew a disc in my lower back and sprained my pelvis. I spent the first 6 months of 2016 recovering from that injury.

Spinal stenosis recovery

I had spinal stenosis which put me in a position where I was bent over at about a 30-degree angle at the waist, thus I was not able to stand upright.  Sitting was okay, and sleeping in the fetal position on my side worked well.

After month recuperating, my wife and I desperately needed some time away.  I had not been able to do much of anything for months and I was stir crazy.  In mid-April 2016, we decided to take an extended weekend trip to Palm Springs, which is about a four-hour drive for us.  Driving a car was fine, since that position was comfortable for me, so the trip over was pretty uneventful.

At this point in my recovery, I was able to get around by riding my bike since leaning over the handlebars allowed me to maintain the bent over position of stenosis.  Palm Springs is a very bike-friendly city, so we loaded up the bikes and headed out.

Walking with back pain

Walking any kind of distance was still very difficult and the best way for me to do so was to literally walk like a monkey.  I was bent over at the waist with my arms hanging low toward the ground.  Sounds like a great time to take a vacation right?

I could also swim and the hotel we stayed at had a pool, so that was a bonus.  They also had lounge chairs, which once again allowed me to relax in a position that still kept me bent at the waist.

Our hotel was really close to downtown which was nice.  But the problem for me was walking.  I could walk about 50 yards then I needed a break.  I could power through it if I had to, sometimes even leaning on my wife’s shoulders to help me out.

Yes, we could (and did) ride our bikes all over town, but not necessarily on the sidewalks downtown.  We quickly decided that I needed another solution.  Enter the walking stick.

Walking stick for back pain

How to use a cane for lower back problems

It’s kind of funny that neither one of us had ever thought about me using a walking stick.  Downtown Palm Springs has a LOT of different kinds of shops and we were just milling from one to another when we noticed some hand carved wooden walking sticks.

My wife is always on the lookout for cool and different décor for our house, and she spotted this bin of wooden walking sticks.  Honestly we never even really thought about a walking stick for me to use until I pulled one out of the bin.

The stick that I was interested in stood about 5 feet fall.  It was just the right height to give me something to lean against when I needed a break.  We bought the walking stick and away we went.

I have to say, this was a good investment for me at this point in my recovery.  I was even somewhat able to keep up with my wife through downtown Palm Springs.

I definitely got some looks as I was walking up and down the streets, but I didn’t really care.  I would also find a bench and take a break now and then, but the walking stick sure helped me out.

I even got to the point that I would take the wooden walking stick on bike rides, holding it across my handlebars.  That way when we would ride to dinner, or somewhere else, I would have the stick to help me get around.

Using a walking stick is actually pretty easy. You simply walk with it alongside you to help take some pressure off of your back. You shouldn’t rest your full weight on the stick, but rather just take a small percentage of the pressure off of your back. The best way to get started with a cane or walking stick is simply to bring it with you while you’re walking and use it for a few hours. You’ll start to get the hang of it and figure out how to make it most beneficial for you.

The best cane for back problems

If you struggle with back pain, you might consider investing in a wooden walking stick. Of course, there are many different options to choose from, but the one that I purchased worked well for me.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Brazos Rustic Wood Walking Stick, Twisted Hickory, Traditional Style Handle, for Men & Women, Made in the USA, 48'
7,016 Reviews
Brazos Rustic Wood Walking Stick, Twisted Hickory, Traditional Style Handle, for Men & Women, Made in the USA, 48"
  • THE SECURE TIP helps gain good traction on most surfaces
  • A GREAT COMPANION AS YOU WALK OR HIKE. This walking stick will help you look and feel good no matter where you go.
  • HANDCRAFTED FROM NATURAL WOOD by our skilled woodworkers using only the highest quality materials and time-tested methods
  • THE CONVENIENT WRIST STRAP provides you with a nice, secure grip
  • THE RUBBER TIP AT THE BOTTOM provides excellent traction. Contains latex.
Bestseller No. 2
Vive Wooden Walking Stick - (55') Willow Cane for Seniors Hiking & Balance - Heavy Duty Carved Twisted Wood Sticks for Men & Women - Stylish Support Pole for Outdoor Trekking & Weight Bearing
25 Reviews
Vive Wooden Walking Stick - (55") Willow Cane for Seniors Hiking & Balance - Heavy Duty Carved Twisted Wood Sticks for Men & Women - Stylish Support Pole for Outdoor Trekking & Weight Bearing
  • DURABLE WILLOW BARK CONSTRUCTION: The Vive Carved Wooden Walking Stick is meticulously crafted from willow tree bark, ensuring a strong and elegant design that offers exceptional durability and long-lasting support. Its lightweight yet robust build makes it convenient to carry while providing dependable support. The carefully designed carvings along its sides add a touch of timeless style to your daily routine.
  • IDEAL FOR MULTIPLE USES: This walking stick is designed to cater to a range of needs. It offers sturdy and reliable support, making it ideal for individuals seeking additional stability during various activities. Whether you require support after extended exercise or need assistance with mobility, this walking stick strikes the perfect balance between strength and lightweight convenience, suitable for diverse conditions and environments.
  • SECURE NON-SLIP RUBBER TIP: Enhance your peace of mind with the thoughtfully engineered non-slip rubber tip. Crafted for added stability, this dependable rubber tip also absorbs the impact placed on your wrist and hand with each step. Perfect for use on smooth or slick surfaces, it ensures superior traction for enhanced support and safety.
  • EASY-GRIP ROPE HANDLE & LEATHER WRIST STRAP: The Vive Carved Wooden Walking Stick includes a leather wrist strap and rope handle. These features let you grip your walking stick with more security and greater ease—increasing comfort and relieving wrist tension/fatigue.
  • VIVE 60-DAY GUARANTEE: 60-Day Guarantee so you can purchase with confidence.

It’s been quite a journey. I now am far more flexible – and can even use a yoga wheel (Chirp Wheel). Using a walking stick was not something I thought of in the beginning, but it sure makes sense.

Have you used a walking stick for back pain?

Let me know in the comments section below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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