Cane Info


What is the function of a walking cane?  
Walking canes are not just for older people. They can make getting around a little bit easier, including for those who might suffer a disability or are recovering from an injury. Canes can help aid balance and support, and this may assist in avoiding falls. Once you are accustomed to using a walking cane, you’ll be amazed by how much easier getting around may be!

Walking with a cane
1) Walking: A few simple suggestions could allow you to get the most out of your walking cane. When walking, the cane is usually held in the hand that’s opposite an injured or less strong leg – for example, in case of a troublesome right leg, the cane may be grasped in the left hand. The elbow of the hand holding the cane is maintained close to the body, with the hand close to the hip.  The hand and cane are moved forward with the step forward of the opposite leg. If the cane is intended primarily to assist in balance and support, it doesn’t matter which hand holds the cane - whatever hand is most comfortable may hold the cane - and the cane is moved it at the same time as the step by the opposing leg.

The lighter leg is the affected leg.

2) Using stairs: Stairs are tricky and special caution is advised.  If a cane is used in climbing stairs, the leg next to the cane usually leads and then the can and opposing leg proceed up the step. If a can is used in going down stairs, the step down is usually first made with the cane and the opposing leg, then the other leg follows down the step. For safety’s sake, always keep the free hand on the railing when going up or down stairs that have a railing.

 
The lighter leg is the affected leg.

3) Using a chair: If a cane is used in sitting, a turn around is made at the chair or sofa so that the chair or sofa is behind, then hands are placed on the chair arms or on an arm of the sofa.  The upper body is bent forward to slowly lower into the chair. If a cane is used in getting up from a chair or sofa, the foot opposing the cane side is moved forward a few inches and the chair or sofa is pushed by the hand on the same side.  As the hand is pushed, weight is shifted to the leg of the cane side and the cane assists to support on rising.

   
The lighter leg is the affected leg.

*These three tips provide suggestions for use of a walking cane that may or may not apply in your particular instance. FoldingSticks.com is not a medical or healthcare professional, and the suggestions here are not and should not be considered as medical or health advice.  You should consult your medical or healthcare professional to determine if a walking cane is appropriate for you and whether the foregoing suggestions would apply to your use.  Your medical or healthcare professional should also size your cane prior to your purchase and use.  Walking canes must be properly fitted for each individual and use.  FoldingSticks.com is not responsible for, and disclaims all nature of liability or obligation whatsoever as to, sizing and use of our products.  FoldingSticks.com is not responsible or obligated for injuries or damage resulting from the sizing or use of our products.

Are your folding canes adjustable?
Most of our folding canes are adjustable in increments of one inch, and typically range from 33 inches to 37 inches. If you desire a walking cane and travel quite a lot, a folding cane may be the answer. Made of light-weight aluminum, folding canes are hollow inside with a tension-sprung bungee cord inside the tubes that connects all of the cane’s pieces together. To fold it up, you just pull each piece apart and fold it like a tent support. FoldingSticks.com’s new Mini-Folding canes make traveling even easier because they fold into a 9” long section and come with a free zipper travel bag.

How do I find the right length for my adjustable folding cane?
Adjusting a folding cane is simple! Just loosen the locking mechanism by turning the nut counter-clockwise. Press the buttons individually and turn the adjusting holes slightly off-center. Then upend the cane and place it at the side of the body with the elbow slightly bent. Move the adjusting leg until the rubber tip at the bottom is equal to the wrist. Return the cane to its upright position and move the adjusting holes over their nearest buttons to the point that the buttons are completely protruding through the adjusting holes. (If a button is not completely through an adjusting hole, the piece could jam into another piece and ruin the folding cane). Tighten the locking mechanism by turning the nut clockwise.

*These instructions are intended to be only a general guide. FoldingSticks.com is not a medical or healthcare professional, and these instructions are not and should not be considered as medical or health advice.  You should consult your medical or healthcare professional to determine if a walking cane is appropriate for you and whether the foregoing suggestions would apply to your use.  Your medical or healthcare professional should also size your cane prior to your purchase and use. The adjustable folding canes could assist in balance and stability only, but they cannot and are not intended to support the full weight of any person. FoldingSticks.com is not responsible for, and disclaims all nature of liability or obligation whatsoever as to, sizing and use of our products. FoldingSticks.com is not responsible or obligated for injuries or damage resulting from the sizing or use of our products. FoldingSticks.com makes no representations or warranties, and bears no responsibility, for or as to these folding canes or their functionality.

How do I find the right grip and handle for me?
Selecting the right grip for you comes down to nothing more than choosing the grip that you like best, however you should keep in mind that the handle assists you in use of the cane, so finding the most comfortable handle and grip combination should be a top priority.

Derby Handle

The Derby Handle is the most popular handle on the market today. Designed to provide maximum comfort, Derby Handle canes may be a good choice for people who seek support.  These handles, somewhat centered over the shaft, may better distribute weight over the shaft. Derby Handle canes can be used in either hand.

Fritz Handle

Designed in the 16th century by a member of the German nobility, the Fritz Handle was created to provide the most comfort for people who desire a hand fitted handle.  Some users with arthritis have found this handle to be most suitable. Walking canes featuring Fritz Handles may be used in either hand.

Palm Handle

Palm Handles are ergonomically designed to fit the contours of the individual user’s hand.  Some find that walking canes with Palm Handles offer top comfort and support without need to maintain a tight grip.  These could be a good option for arthritis sufferers. Canes featuring Palm Handles are available for the right hand or the left hand.

I’d like to buy a cane for someone. What size should I get?
The good news is since the majority of our walking canes are size adjustable, you don’t need to know the recipient’s cane size ahead of time! Most of our folding canes adjust from 33 inches to 37 inches in one inch increments. All our canes are exchangeable or refundable when returned in original condition within 30 days.

Where are your canes produced?
FoldingSticks.com carries only the best-made adjustable walking canes. Our canes are made in the United States.

Why is there a wrist strap on the Mini-Folding Adjustable Canes?
Sometimes both hands are needed and the cane must be released. The strap is intended to allow the user’s wrist to be placed through that strap and slid up the arm when in stationary position and not using the cane. The strap should never be used when walking with the cane. Tripping, injury to the wrist or other serious consequences could result.

What do the rubber tips do?
Just like the soles of shoes, the rubber tips provide traction and limit the cane from slipping in use. Replacement rubber tips may be ordered from FoldingSticks.com’s Cane Accessories

I am about to travel on an airplane -- will they take my cane away?
Security personnel must allow you to keep your cane and can only confiscate it if you give them good reason to do so. Be sure to inform them that you need assistance to sit down or require support against something. Folding canes are the easiest to travel with because you may fold them up and place them in the plane’s seat-back pocket in front of you, or you may fit it into your carry-on bag.

How do I improve the longevity of my cane?
As with anything else, proper maintenance will improve the life-span of your cane. When the cane is not in use, upend it and rest the rubber tip against the wall - the handle provides a wider base and the rubber tip’s traction decreases the likelihood of the cane falling.

Once in a while it will be necessary to clean your cane. Simply use soap and warm water. Chemical cleaners may leave a slippery residue, which can affect the grip on the cane, or may cause outright damage.

Cane Anatomy 101

Walking canes have four simple parts: handle, collar, shaft and the tip.
Handles can be found in several varieties, however the two most popular are the Derby and the Fritz. (For more information please see “How do I find the right handle and grip for me?”) The collar is a thin strip of metal that connects the handle to the shaft. The shaft is the straight part of the cane. The shafts of FoldingSticks.com’s folding canes are made out of aluminum or lightweight carbon fiber. The tip is at the end of the cane - where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. The tips used to be made from copper or other metals to protect it from normal wear-and-tear. Now, most tips are made from rubber because it provides better traction and can be replaced easily.

History of Canes
Once, many years ago, an ancestor of the human race tired of dragging his hairy knuckles across the ground. While he lacked the cranial capacity to find a solution to the problem, several generations passed before one hairy proto-human discovered the answer - and stood up.

Since the time of the “Biped Revolution,” humans have needed support for walking, and nice, sturdy and straight pieces of wood became the most popular choice. Walking sticks became an important aid to shepherds and travelers. They became weapons (just ask Charles Sumner, famously caned by Preston Brooks in the United States Senate in 1856), or symbols of authority (Bishop’s Croft, anyone) and eventually they became an important accessory of a gentleman’s wardrobe.

Though mankind’s need for support and assistance while walking stretches far back into primordial time, the term “walking cane” is a relatively new invention, coming into existence in the 16th century, when walking sticks began to be made from the jointed stems of exotic materials, such as bamboo, rattan and - cane.

For nearly 250 years, stretching from the late 17th century to the early 20th century, high quality walking canes became an essential accessory for any gentleman who deemed himself fashionable. The cane he used offered a symbol for his status in society and the size of his purse. A gentleman walking with a cane made from good hard wood with a silver or gold handle was certainly someone worth knowing. Then there were the eccentric gentlemen who used canes made from animal vertebra, glass or dried animal skin or the sexual organ of a male Bison.
 
In the U.S., presidents often carried a walking cane or received one as a gift. The Smithsonian Institute’s collection includes a cane presented to George Washington by Benjamin Franklin. It features a gold handle shaped to resemble a Phrygian cap.

In the 20th century, the umbrella, with a curved handle, replaced the cane as a popular accessory (though it could be argued that the umbrella’s very shape enables it to be used as a cane), or a walking stick is now used only accompanied by formal wear.

In the 21st century, walking canes continue to be used for their function and collected for their beauty. Some of the most popular collectors’ canes hide purposes other than merely providing support, such as concealing a blade, pool cue or liquor (canes containing flasks of alcohol were known as “tipplers”).

 

More questions and answers:

Canes and muscle spasms

A fix for arthritic joints?

What is the function of a walking cane?  
Walking canes are not just for older people. They can make getting around a little bit easier, including for those who might suffer a disability or are recovering from an injury. Canes can help aid balance and support, and this may assist in avoiding falls. Once you are accustomed to using a walking cane, you’ll be amazed by how much easier getting around may be!

Walking with a cane
1) Walking: A few simple suggestions could allow you to get the most out of your walking cane. When walking, the cane is usually held in the hand that’s opposite an injured or less strong leg – for example, in case of a troublesome right leg, the cane may be grasped in the left hand. The elbow of the hand holding the cane is maintained close to the body, with the hand close to the hip.  The hand and cane are moved forward with the step forward of the opposite leg. If the cane is intended primarily to assist in balance and support, it doesn’t matter which hand holds the cane - whatever hand is most comfortable may hold the cane - and the cane is moved it at the same time as the step by the opposing leg.

The lighter leg is the affected leg.

2) Using stairs: Stairs are tricky and special caution is advised.  If a cane is used in climbing stairs, the leg next to the cane usually leads and then the can and opposing leg proceed up the step. If a can is used in going down stairs, the step down is usually first made with the cane and the opposing leg, then the other leg follows down the step. For safety’s sake, always keep the free hand on the railing when going up or down stairs that have a railing.

 
The lighter leg is the affected leg.

3) Using a chair: If a cane is used in sitting, a turn around is made at the chair or sofa so that the chair or sofa is behind, then hands are placed on the chair arms or on an arm of the sofa.  The upper body is bent forward to slowly lower into the chair. If a cane is used in getting up from a chair or sofa, the foot opposing the cane side is moved forward a few inches and the chair or sofa is pushed by the hand on the same side.  As the hand is pushed, weight is shifted to the leg of the cane side and the cane assists to support on rising.

   
The lighter leg is the affected leg.

*These three tips provide suggestions for use of a walking cane that may or may not apply in your particular instance. FoldingSticks.com is not a medical or healthcare professional, and the suggestions here are not and should not be considered as medical or health advice.  You should consult your medical or healthcare professional to determine if a walking cane is appropriate for you and whether the foregoing suggestions would apply to your use.  Your medical or healthcare professional should also size your cane prior to your purchase and use.  Walking canes must be properly fitted for each individual and use.  FoldingSticks.com is not responsible for, and disclaims all nature of liability or obligation whatsoever as to, sizing and use of our products.  FoldingSticks.com is not responsible or obligated for injuries or damage resulting from the sizing or use of our products.

Are your folding canes adjustable?
Most of our folding canes are adjustable in increments of one inch, and typically range from 33 inches to 37 inches. If you desire a walking cane and travel quite a lot, a folding cane may be the answer. Made of light-weight aluminum, folding canes are hollow inside with a tension-sprung bungee cord inside the tubes that connects all of the cane’s pieces together. To fold it up, you just pull each piece apart and fold it like a tent support. FoldingSticks.com’s new Mini-Folding canes make traveling even easier because they fold into a 9” long section and come with a free zipper travel bag.

How do I find the right length for my adjustable folding cane?
Adjusting a folding cane is simple! Just loosen the locking mechanism by turning the nut counter-clockwise. Press the buttons individually and turn the adjusting holes slightly off-center. Then upend the cane and place it at the side of the body with the elbow slightly bent. Move the adjusting leg until the rubber tip at the bottom is equal to the wrist. Return the cane to its upright position and move the adjusting holes over their nearest buttons to the point that the buttons are completely protruding through the adjusting holes. (If a button is not completely through an adjusting hole, the piece could jam into another piece and ruin the folding cane). Tighten the locking mechanism by turning the nut clockwise.

*These instructions are intended to be only a general guide. FoldingSticks.com is not a medical or healthcare professional, and these instructions are not and should not be considered as medical or health advice.  You should consult your medical or healthcare professional to determine if a walking cane is appropriate for you and whether the foregoing suggestions would apply to your use.  Your medical or healthcare professional should also size your cane prior to your purchase and use. The adjustable folding canes could assist in balance and stability only, but they cannot and are not intended to support the full weight of any person. FoldingSticks.com is not responsible for, and disclaims all nature of liability or obligation whatsoever as to, sizing and use of our products. FoldingSticks.com is not responsible or obligated for injuries or damage resulting from the sizing or use of our products. FoldingSticks.com makes no representations or warranties, and bears no responsibility, for or as to these folding canes or their functionality.

How do I find the right grip and handle for me?
Selecting the right grip for you comes down to nothing more than choosing the grip that you like best, however you should keep in mind that the handle assists you in use of the cane, so finding the most comfortable handle and grip combination should be a top priority.

Derby Handle

The Derby Handle is the most popular handle on the market today. Designed to provide maximum comfort, Derby Handle canes may be a good choice for people who seek support.  These handles, somewhat centered over the shaft, may better distribute weight over the shaft. Derby Handle canes can be used in either hand.

Fritz Handle

Designed in the 16th century by a member of the German nobility, the Fritz Handle was created to provide the most comfort for people who desire a hand fitted handle.  Some users with arthritis have found this handle to be most suitable. Walking canes featuring Fritz Handles may be used in either hand.

Palm Handle

Palm Handles are ergonomically designed to fit the contours of the individual user’s hand.  Some find that walking canes with Palm Handles offer top comfort and support without need to maintain a tight grip.  These could be a good option for arthritis sufferers. Canes featuring Palm Handles are available for the right hand or the left hand.

I’d like to buy a cane for someone. What size should I get?
The good news is since the majority of our walking canes are size adjustable, you don’t need to know the recipient’s cane size ahead of time! Most of our folding canes adjust from 33 inches to 37 inches in one inch increments. All our canes are exchangeable or refundable when returned in original condition within 30 days.

Where are your canes produced?
FoldingSticks.com carries only the best-made adjustable walking canes. Our canes are made in the United States.

Why is there a wrist strap on the Mini-Folding Adjustable Canes?
Sometimes both hands are needed and the cane must be released. The strap is intended to allow the user’s wrist to be placed through that strap and slid up the arm when in stationary position and not using the cane. The strap should never be used when walking with the cane. Tripping, injury to the wrist or other serious consequences could result.

What do the rubber tips do?
Just like the soles of shoes, the rubber tips provide traction and limit the cane from slipping in use. Replacement rubber tips may be ordered from FoldingSticks.com’s Cane Accessories

I am about to travel on an airplane -- will they take my cane away?
Security personnel must allow you to keep your cane and can only confiscate it if you give them good reason to do so. Be sure to inform them that you need assistance to sit down or require support against something. Folding canes are the easiest to travel with because you may fold them up and place them in the plane’s seat-back pocket in front of you, or you may fit it into your carry-on bag.

How do I improve the longevity of my cane?
As with anything else, proper maintenance will improve the life-span of your cane. When the cane is not in use, upend it and rest the rubber tip against the wall - the handle provides a wider base and the rubber tip’s traction decreases the likelihood of the cane falling.

Once in a while it will be necessary to clean your cane. Simply use soap and warm water. Chemical cleaners may leave a slippery residue, which can affect the grip on the cane, or may cause outright damage.

Cane Anatomy 101

Walking canes have four simple parts: handle, collar, shaft and the tip.
Handles can be found in several varieties, however the two most popular are the Derby and the Fritz. (For more information please see “How do I find the right handle and grip for me?”) The collar is a thin strip of metal that connects the handle to the shaft. The shaft is the straight part of the cane. The shafts of FoldingSticks.com’s folding canes are made out of aluminum or lightweight carbon fiber. The tip is at the end of the cane - where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. The tips used to be made from copper or other metals to protect it from normal wear-and-tear. Now, most tips are made from rubber because it provides better traction and can be replaced easily.

History of Canes
Once, many years ago, an ancestor of the human race tired of dragging his hairy knuckles across the ground. While he lacked the cranial capacity to find a solution to the problem, several generations passed before one hairy proto-human discovered the answer - and stood up.

Since the time of the “Biped Revolution,” humans have needed support for walking, and nice, sturdy and straight pieces of wood became the most popular choice. Walking sticks became an important aid to shepherds and travelers. They became weapons (just ask Charles Sumner, famously caned by Preston Brooks in the United States Senate in 1856), or symbols of authority (Bishop’s Croft, anyone) and eventually they became an important accessory of a gentleman’s wardrobe.

Though mankind’s need for support and assistance while walking stretches far back into primordial time, the term “walking cane” is a relatively new invention, coming into existence in the 16th century, when walking sticks began to be made from the jointed stems of exotic materials, such as bamboo, rattan and - cane.

For nearly 250 years, stretching from the late 17th century to the early 20th century, high quality walking canes became an essential accessory for any gentleman who deemed himself fashionable. The cane he used offered a symbol for his status in society and the size of his purse. A gentleman walking with a cane made from good hard wood with a silver or gold handle was certainly someone worth knowing. Then there were the eccentric gentlemen who used canes made from animal vertebra, glass or dried animal skin or the sexual organ of a male Bison.
 
In the U.S., presidents often carried a walking cane or received one as a gift. The Smithsonian Institute’s collection includes a cane presented to George Washington by Benjamin Franklin. It features a gold handle shaped to resemble a Phrygian cap.

In the 20th century, the umbrella, with a curved handle, replaced the cane as a popular accessory (though it could be argued that the umbrella’s very shape enables it to be used as a cane), or a walking stick is now used only accompanied by formal wear.

In the 21st century, walking canes continue to be used for their function and collected for their beauty. Some of the most popular collectors’ canes hide purposes other than merely providing support, such as concealing a blade, pool cue or liquor (canes containing flasks of alcohol were known as “tipplers”).

 

More questions and answers:

Canes and muscle spasms

A fix for arthritic joints?

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