Sunday, February 14, 2010

Stairs and the knees

Booktoots's Weblog had an interesting posting on A Possible Stairs Maneuver for TKR Folk. Stairs are a concern for those with knee issues including post-surgery recovery. We know that the knees, hips, and ankles/feet are the most-used joints when using the stairs. It's a major help if the stairwell has railings. Some of us may never be able to take the steps two or three at a time.

What do you do with the wall if there is one on one side and the railing is on the other? Sure, we'll use it to steady ourselves, but after a bit of time, all that touching adds up to become black handmarks and streaks. A good scrubbing with a cleaning agent works wonders.

Marie's post mentioned an email from someone who was going down the steps backwards, but she wasn't able to do so. For some of us with knee replacements, it's a most logical method since our new knees may not be able to go downstairs the normal way at first. I've been using this method since my knee issues started. After I returned from a wedding my sister said that she was impressed by the way I "flew down the steps backwards."

There are hazards to this. Being familiar with your own steps works. If you miss a step, three things can happen. You'll hit the next stop down and nothing will happen, it will hurt, or fall painfully down the remainder of the steps. An alternative would be sidestepping down, a slow method. Work with a therapist on this to develop methods that will work for you.

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