After a knee surgery this summer, I was stuck in a straight knee brace for about 2 months. Unable to bend my knee, I found it difficult to do simple tasks such as putting on my socks, shoes, and even my pants. This problem inspired me to create a simple low tech device that could assist people in the same situation. It could even be used to assist elderly people who have lost the flexibility in their knees and back making them unable to reach their feet.
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Step 1: Parts List
1 long enough pole to extend reach
(a long dowel, broom stick, or lacrosse stick works perfect)
1 spacer about 2 inches wider than the user's foot
2 clothes hangers with clips
(not pictured, I could not find one at the time)
Step 2: Taping Spacer to Pole
Use duct tape to fasten the wood block to the pole. Attach the wood block about 2 inches from the end of the pole and secure the block with tape at the top and bottom. Ensure the block is sturdy and unlikely to move.
Duct tape makes the project quick and easy to complete without drilling any holes.
Step 3: Attach Hangers
In this step you will tape the 2 hangers in place.
Center the hanger on the side of the pole and use 3 or 4 crossing pieces of duct tape to fasten the hanger. Test to ensure the hanger does not move
Center the second hanger on the side of the block and use 3 or 4 crossing pieces of duct tape to fasten the hanger. Test to ensure the hanger does not move
Step 4: Adding a Shoehorn
Use duct tape to attach the shoehorn to the bottom of pole.
If the duct tape is not strong enough to withstand the force of using the shoehorn. Drill 2 holes in the shoehorn and screw it directly to the pole.
Step 5: How to Use This Simple Device
With sock and device in hand, open the clip and put the side of the sock in the clip. Make sure the sock is facing towards the the pole and clip the other side of the sock in place.
Now you can extend your sock towards your feet and slip your foot inside with ease.
Continue pulling up on the device until the sock is on your foot and the clips slip off.
Without bending your knees or back, you can put on your socks.
Clip the front of the pants into one of the hangers. Make sure the back of the pants are open. Stick your feet in and just pull the pants close enough to reach by hand. Without bending your knees or back, you can put on your pants!
With the shoehorn attached to the end of the pole, just place the shoehorn inside the heel of your shoe. Now step right into your shoe!
That is how to use this simple multi-use device to assist putting on socks, shoes, and pants. Hopefully it can be recreated and used to help people unable to bend their knees or back due to surgery or loss of flexibility. Thanks for reading this instructable!
Participated in the
Humana Health Challenge