Injuries, accidents, and certain illnesses can affect one person’s ability to stand and walk on their own. However, some cases do not fully incapacitate a person to the point that they can’t use their legs and feet anymore. For these people, walking aids like the best forearm crutches can be more preferable.
If you’re one of those who is looking for the best forearm crutches to help you walk better, we’ve rounded up six of the best products available in the market today. Check them out below.
What are Forearm Crutches?
Forearm crutches are mobility aids that help support the body. It transfers a person’s weight from their lower body to their upper body, allowing movement.
Also known as an elbow or Lofstrand crutches, these products are often used by individuals whose legs can’t support their weight but still has sufficient upper body strength to stay upright and active.
Forearm vs. Underarm Crutches
There are two popular types of crutches: the forearm and underarm crutches.
In the US, the underarm crutches are more widely preferred because of its ease of use. All you have to do is to place the pad against the armpits and grab the handles to start moving.
However, they can cause discomfort through rubbing against the armpit area and can cause crutch paralysis.
Forearm crutches, on the other hand, has a learning curve to master.
It also needs a bit of upper body strength training to use with ease. Once done, though, you won’t have any problem using them
These two products may seem like they’re same tools, but in reality, they cater to different needs. Choosing the right one for you is essential.
Choosing the wrong walking aid can quickly complicate your mobility as it can make moving more difficult or underutilize the capacities you still have left.
Underarm crutches are ideal for those who are just recovering from an injury as they are very easy to use.
Forearm crutches, however, as mentioned above, need a bit of adapting to masterfully.
This makes them more ideal for long-term applications as they can build up the muscle mass and strength they need to move around with ease using these mobility aids.
They are also better options for those who can support their weight with their legs but need some assistance to walk.
There are also alternative to crutches that you can use if you are not comfortable in using one.
Benefits of Using Forearm Crutches
If you’re torn between forearm and underarm crutches just because the latter is a lot easier to use, you might want to reconsider.
In most cases, elbow crutches can be better a mobility aid for someone who needs the extra support. It’s not the preferred option in Europe and the rest of the world for nothing.
To convince you why forearm crutches can be a better option for you, here’s a quick list of its many benefits.
1. It will help improve your posture
Underarm crutches tend to cause users to slouch, thanks to their height and positioning. This can affect one’s position and cause muscle pain and strain.
Forearm crutches, on the other hand, encourage better posture as they’ll be a lot easier to use the taller and straighter you stand.
2. They’re more stable
While elbow crutches do need good coordination and balance to use and master, they can be more stable especially on uneven terrain.
This is why they’re perfect for people who want to stay active despite having limited mobility as these mobility aids can quickly offer flexibility.
3. They’re more comfortable
Forearm crutches are designed with a cuff placed underneath the elbow, so strain and pressure are reduced from your wrist while you’re in motion.
This is why they’re more comfortable to use than underarm crutches that tend to rub against the armpits and press against the body.
4. Compact and lightweight
With their smaller size, these mobility aids are also more compact and lightweight, making them easier to use when traveling.
Combine this with the stability it offers and the ease of use for climbing and descending stairs and you’ve got an excellent tool that boosts your mobility without too much fuss.
Considerations in Getting Forearm Crutches
Of course, it’s also worth mentioning a few popular concerns about elbow crutches. First on this list is the fact that it takes some training to properly use these mobility aids with ease.
You’re not expected to perfect your walk with these items the first time you wear them. It also requires considerably more upper body strength to work with these tools.
Forearm crutches are also thought to cause muscle damage if used incorrectly. While this is true, it’s important to note that underarm crutches can cause the same problem as well.
To avoid this, you have to make sure that the crutch properly fits the user. This way, you can prevent abrasions, muscle pains, and even nerve damage.
It’s best to get someone to get your measurements to ensure the proper fit of an elbow crutch.
Best Forearm Crutches Today
To help you find the best Lofstrand crutches for your mobility needs, here are six of the top-rated products on the market today that you can choose from.
Medline Aluminum Forearm Crutches
Finding an affordable and high-quality mobility aids can be a priority for many people with disability. This is why the Medline Aluminum Forearm Crutches are so popular.
With a friendly price tag and durable, double-walled aluminum tubes for its crutches’ main body, it offers excellent support and stability that you’ll need from the best forearm crutches.
While this product doesn’t provide absolute comfort for users as its hand grips are not padded, and its cuffs are made from hard vinyl, it gets the job done well.
Its design proves to be useful in keeping the crutches securely attached to the user. The materials used may not be as comfortable as some would want them to be, but they’re very durable.
For its low price, it can really be the perfect pick for those who want to be practical with their mobility aids.
Available in three sizes (youth, adult, and tall), the Medline Aluminum Forearm Crutches is also fully adjustable.
The length of the crutch can be easily adjusted according to your height and the distance between the hand grip, and the cuff can be easily adjusted as well. Read our full review here.
- It’s very affordable.
- Safe and durable materials are used.
- They’re very stable, thanks to the rubber pads at the tips of each crutch.
- It’s very compact.
- The handgrips are not rubberized, so it’s not the most comfortable to hold.
- The cuffs need some DIYing if it proves to be too big for your arm.
Drive Medical Euro Style Light Weight Forearm Crutch
When it comes to an item that will support your weight and help stabilize you, most people think that the heavier it is, the better it will be. In most cases, this can be a very good idea, but for the best Loftsrand crutches, it’s not.
Lightweight ones are better options since you will also be carrying it around. Every time you take a step, you will be lifting these tools up, so if they’re hefty, you’ll get tired easily.
This is why the Drive Medical Euro Style Light Weight Forearm Crutch is such a favorite product. As each crutch only weighs 1.5 lbs, it’s easily one of the lightest in the category.
It also has a pretty high weight capacity at 300 lbs, making it an excellent choice for most folks who need a good mobility aid.
A lot of people might also like the look of the Drive Medical Euro Style Light Weight Forearm Crutch.
Unlike other forearm crutches, this looks more modern and less like a medical device. It also comes in a bright color, so it adds some character and fun to a user’s look. Read our full review here.
- It’s very lightweight.
- It doesn’t look like other elbow crutches.
- It’s fully adjustable.
- It’s very compact making it good for traveling.
- The tips can quickly wear out. You can, however, easily buy replacements for a low price.
- The handles can be uncomfortable for some people as there’s no cushioning or contour to accommodate your grip.
- It doesn’t have cuffs. It has a nice armrest instead, which makes it impossible to secure the crutches on the user’s arms.
Ergobaum Prime 6th Generation By Ergoactives
With the many advances in the medical and technological fields, you should expect to find the best elbow crutch to offer state-of-the-art features.
Ergoactives’ Ergobaum Prime 6th Generation Lofstrand crutches is a good example of a product with such great features, proving that a little ingenuity can help improve people’s lives.
A quick look at the Ergobaum crutches will tell you that these are no ordinary mobility aids. Further inspection will help you get to know that they are feature-packed.
Designed with Shock Absorber Patented Technology that uses spring-loaded legs contribute to reducing impact while on the move.
They’re also equipped with knee rests and an ergonomic grip making it easy to handle. A few handy extra features are also available.
On the handle, you’ll find a flashlight and horn. It also has reflectors so they can be easily seen in the dark. Read our full review here.
- Very modern looking, this product has a beautiful appearance.
- Packed with great features that might come in handy for long-term users.
- Completely adjustable for any height.
- The knee rests make it more comfortable to use when standing still.
- Costs thrice as much as other no-frills forearm crutches.
- It’s quite heavy.
Invacare Forearm Crutches
Some people prefer mobility aids that are recommended by physical therapy and other medical professionals as they tend to be more trustworthy regarding quality.
If you’re one of these folks, the Invacare Forearm Crutches is something you should look into. This product is preferred by many because it is a highly-recommended product by experts.
Often described as an essential pair of Lofstrand crutches, this product is designed to get the job done.
It’s not packed with bells and whistles, but it helps provide the support needed by someone using elbow crutches.
What makes us pick this unit is its design. Unlike other elbow crutches that lock with just spring-loaded pins, this product uses knurled threaded inserts to secure the body into the height you need it to be in.
It doesn’t rattle or make a scary noise every time a significant amount of weight is put on it, allowing users to comfortably utilize it. Read our full review here.
- Each crutch is very lightweight with just over 2 lbs of weight.
- They’re very sturdy.
- They can be easily handled.
- You can still be able to use your hands when standing still while using these crutches.
- The handgrips are not very comfortable. You can get new grips for it, however.
- They look like hospital-issue crutches. This is purely aesthetic, though, so if you don’t have a problem using something that sounds like it came straight out of a hospital supply cabinet, this won’t be an issue.
Millennial Medical Life Crutch
So, this product isn’t precisely a forearm crutch, but it’s one of the best options if you’re just looking for a pair of mobility aids for short-term use. The Life Crutch is worth mentioning since it is officially used by the NCAA, so you can be rest assured that experts approve of its design and use.
Designed with padded and contoured underarm rests, this product addresses the discomfort most people experience with underarm crutches.
However, what makes it slightly similar to most elbow crutches is its ergonomic handle. These are slanted down to minimize the pressure on your wrists.
It also aims to prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome which is a common problem for most people who use this type of crutches.
Affordable, sturdy, and recommended by experts, the Life Crutch can be a good alternative to those who don’t have much upper body strength that is required by the best forearm crutches. Read our full review here.
- These are very lightweight at just about 2 lbs.
- It’s designed with articulating tips which guarantee stability.
- They’re comfortable to use thanks to the ergonomic design of the underarm rests and hand grips.
- They’re very easy to use and don’t have a steep learning curve.
- Good for short-term users.
- The padded hand grips tend to disintegrate easily. Using the handles bare can be quite slippery as well since they’re slanted downwards.
Millennial Medical In Pro Crutches
Considered as an industry standard, the Millennial Medical In Pro Crutches might just be some of the finest mobility aids in the market today.
They may not exactly be forearm crutches, but, just like the Life Crutches by the same brand, they’re designed to address the many woes the public has for underarm crutches.
With a contoured and thickly padded underarm rests, this product ensures that you won’t have to rest your arms on a rough and hard surface.
Like the Life Crutch, this product also has slightly downward slanting hand grips which allow easier handling and less pressure on the wrists.
These make the In Pro very comfortable to use despite being underarm crutches. Equipped with spring-loaded tips, the In Pro will also go easy on your shoulders.
It will have a slight bounce that will relieve some pressure on your underarms, making its use easier. Read our full review here.
- It has a great design that guarantees comfortable use.
- It can be a nice choice for short-term users.
- It’s very durable.
- The spring-loaded tips relieve pressure on your shoulders while the slanted hand grips reduce pressure on your wrists.
- They’re available in three different colors.
- This product is a bit pricier than other forearm crutches in the list.
Our Recommended Top Forearm Crutch
With six great products to choose from, you might be wondering which one can be the best forearm crutches for you.
If you ask us, based on all of the features, the best one might just be the Invacare Forearm Crutches.
This no-frills mobility aid does the job without any fuss, which is why it can be an excellent choice for those who just want a reliable product to help them move around on their own.
It’s easy to use, sturdy, and has a good weight capacity, making a broad range of consumers find it useful.
A close second would be the Drive Medical Forearm Crutch. But since because it doesn’t secure the crutches on the user’s arms, this can limit its usability for some people.
The Invacare Forearm Crutches does everything the best forearm crutches do, so, if you’ll ask us, this can suit and cater to most people’s needs.
It might not be the fanciest unit on the list, but since it does a better job than others, it’s a product that’s easily worth considering.