Frequently Asked Questions
The most common questions about iWALK.
What are the physical limitations for an iWALK?
Regardless of age, if you can pass these two simple physical ability tests you should be capable of using the iWALK 3.0:
- Before your injury you easily walk up and down stairs at a normal pace without using a hand rail.
- You can balance on one foot for a full 30 seconds.
Is there an age limit for using the iWALK3.0 Crutch?
The short answer is NO, there are no age limits for using the iWALK3.0. But there’s more to it, so continue reading.
We used to suggest an age limit of 12 to 65 for the original iWALK Free generation 1 crutch. But with the new iWALK3.0 and it’s enhanced stability and ease of use, we’ve found that using age as a factor was incorrectly disqualifying too many people who could use the device. So we’ve changed our thinking entirely, and now, we no longer look at age, instead, we’ve adopted ABILITY LIMITS. What does this mean? “Ability Limit” means that as long as you have average strength and average mobility prior to your injury and you fit in with the other parameters covered in the “Can I Use It?” page you are a great candidate for the iWALK3.0. There are plenty of people over the age of 65 that have average strength and average mobility and would do great on the device. There are also people under the age of 65 that don’t have average strength and mobility that shouldn’t use the device. It all depends on who the person is and what their abilities are.
A good rule of thumb is if you can ascend and descend stairs without requiring the hand rail for balance or support, then you can iWALK.
Can I go up and down stairs with the iWALK3.0 crutch?
Yes. Navigating stairs on conventional crutches is dangerous and strenuous, but taking stairs is one thing that you can do with your iWALK 3.0 crutch that you can’t do with a knee scooter or conventional crutches.
Will I hurt my knee if I use the iWALK crutch?
No. There is a common misconception that you are kneel on your knee (maybe that’s why the word is “knee-l”) when using iWALK 3.0, but you don’t. When you use the iWALK 3.0, only your shin comes in contact with the knee platform (perhaps we should have called it the shin platform?) When the knee is bent 90 degrees, the patellar region is not in contact with the platform and thus does not bear any direct weight when using the iWALK 3.0.
In rare instances the iWALK3.0 can cause localized soreness in the tibial tuberocity, which is the area of the shin directly below the knee.
For most people, the transition from the knee to the shin (tibia) is fairly straight, but some people have a pronounced bump. In extreme cases, the size of this protrusion is more than the standard foam padding on the iWALK3.0 can support, which can result in a localized painful “hot spot”.
Fortunately, there’s an easy solution – just augment the existing foam near the front of the crutch to accommodate the condition. You can purchase a replacement pad from us and simply install it on top of the existing pad, or you can also try some other readily available remedies, such as a folded hand towel, inexpensive gardening knee pads found at home improvement stores, etc.
We could simply use a thicker pad to accommodate everyone, but we don’t – and here’s why. The connection between the leg and the crutch is crucial for feel and control. Basically, you want the iWALK crutch to be an integral part of your leg. Having no padding would be the ideal, but it would be too uncomfortable. So we intentionally use the minimum amount of padding to provide the best compromise between comfort and control.
How long will my iWALK 3.0 crutch last?
Nothing lasts forever, but your iWALK will last a long, long time… probably much longer than the time you will need to recover. The most common things to wear out are the knee platform pad, the thigh saddle pads or the rubber foot tread. But fear not. Replacements for all of the parts of the iWALK 3.0 are available from us.
I am a below knee (BK) amputee, can I use the iWALK 3.0?
Absolutely- in fact, the iWALK3.0 is an everyday item for many BK amputees who use it in common situations when they don’t want to don their prosthetic leg. Examples are showering, short trips, at the gym, beach etc. iWALK3.0 is commonly used as a prosthetic training device for new amputees who are learning to walk on a prosthetic or for those who cannot yet tolerate a prosthetic limb. Also, if your prosthetic limb isn’t available, for example, if it’s getting repaired, the iWALK3.0 is your best substitute.
A commonly overlooked feature of the iWALK 3.0 is that the mounts for the calf strap are free to slide forward and back on the “rails” which are integral to the side of the knee platform. This was done so that the user could position the strap in different locations to accommodate different conditions, casts, boots, etc. For amputees, this feature is key as it allows forward placement of the strap to accommodate residual limbs as short as four inches.
Do you sell replacement pads for where your lower leg and knee rests on the iWALK?
Yes! A small minority of people need augmentation of the padding under the area just below the knee cap. You can accomplish this a couple of ways. First, you can simply take a wash cloth or small hand towel, fold it over a few times and use that on top of the existing padding. You can also purchase a second pad and stack it directly on top of the existing pad. The new pads have peel and stick application, so it is a very easy fix.
How to contact us
Please fill in the form below and we will get back to you straight away. If you have an urgent requirement, our customer service helpline, 057 868 2304, is open Mon-Fri, 9am-1pm and 2pm to 5.30pm.