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Walking Sticks & Canes.

scottyrocks

I'll Lock Up
Messages
9,060
Location
Isle of Langerhan, NY
Swinging a cane is never a good idea unless you intend to strike someone with it. Walk as you normally would while allowing the cane to hang from your hand, and "plant" the cane as you step with the opposite foot (i.e., if you're holding the cane in your right hand, you place the rubber tip on the ground as you step with your left foot). For a more thorough explanation, read this page on the Fashionable Canes website.

Ive usually heard this as the way to walk with a cane.

However, having been in a couple of motorcycle, er, 'altercations' :rolleyes:, I have found that keeping the cane on the same side as the injured appendage works much better for me. I can take the weight off the foot/ankle as I step down on it by having the cane on the same side.

Not that my way is the 'right' way. Is just what works for me so I offer it up here.
 

Oldsarge

One Too Many
Messages
1,440
Location
On the banks of the Wilamette
What a gentleman requires . . .



HPIM6516JPGw560h969.jpg
 

SLOshank

New in Town
Messages
42
Location
San Luis Obispo, CA
I have a sword cane that my son-in-law custom made for me. The base is an original Victorian sword base, black and laquered, with a newly turned brass head that has been engraved, and a new straight pull foot and a half long blade. Problem is, it's so nice, I rarely carry it on my walks. I just grab one of my old walking sticks when I head out the door. :rolleyes: Regards! Michaelson
Sword canes are highly illegal (felony) in many places so beware.
 

Oldsarge

One Too Many
Messages
1,440
Location
On the banks of the Wilamette
True. There have been several occasions where someone has received a sword cane as a gift, completely unawares what it was. They attempt to board a plane with it and suddenly find it confiscated leaving him/her with no support upon arrival at the destination. They come under the classification of Concealed Weapons and usually require a CCW permit.

And considering how much damage one can inflict with a standard stick, the internal blade is really superfluous. There used to be an entire martial art that developed in the UK called 'single stick fighting' that was part of a gentleman's education. It's referenced in the Sherlock Holmes stories, especially in Study in Scarlet. I don't know than anyone teaches it any more but here is a DVD you could use as a simple introduction.
 
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normanf

One of the Regulars
Messages
156
Location
Salida
I know this is an old thread... I still have the same collapsible crane I did when I was 12 and was crippled with a bad bout of arthritis - it was a lifesaver in walking to school. Every now and then it still comes in handy for me.
 

Shangas

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,114
Location
Melbourne, Australia
Singlestick fighting was very popular during the Victorian era. You can still find information about it (including diagrams on the various moves) on the internet. Everything from how to trip up your opponent, how to attack someone when you've got a shorter stick, how to totally incapacitate them...It's interesting reading. Of course, back then, almost every man carried a walking-stick, young and old...
 

DNO

One Too Many
Messages
1,815
Location
Toronto, Canada
I take a nightly stroll through my neighbourhood and wouldn't think of not taking a walking stick. I have a number of vintage walking sticks...most of them quite light and certainly not up to 'cane' standards. It's almost a tribute, on my part, to the gentleman's fashion that died out in the First World War...a gentleman would never consider a stroll without a hat and a stick!

My most valued stick is one I found at a rural auction...a malacca stick with a silver band engraved with the name of an officer in the Queen's Own Rifles of Canada. The band also had an enamelled badge of the regiment. When I got home, I conducted some quick research on the officer (pre-internet days...good thing I had a good library) and found that he was killed in action at the Battle of Vimy Ridge in April 1917...the only officer to be killed in the 3rd Battalion, CEF, that day. Sent shivers up my spine. I don't walk with this stick, of course.

Time for my walk.
 

Blackthorn

I'll Lock Up
Messages
4,407
Location
Oroville
I sometimes use one of my Irish 'Blackthorn' sticks when I'm out and about. A very 'smart' walking-out stick.
Good choice, Paddy! I have a small collection of them, obtained on my trips to the Emerald Isle, and that's how I came by my screen name.
 

Oldsarge

One Too Many
Messages
1,440
Location
On the banks of the Wilamette
Periodically I see a good blackthorn stick for sale and bemoan my current lack of available funds. I'd sure like to get one before we leave for Europe, though. Not just for the style involved but I suspect it would be useful for negotiating slippery Dutch and Belgian sidewalks. You know, the ones made of cobblestones back when Edward the Confessor was running around?
 

Shangas

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,114
Location
Melbourne, Australia
I hate those old cobblestone roads. The ones made of ACTUAL cobbles are a nightmare to walk on. I would fully support any venture to purchase a stick so as to navigate such roads with greater safety. And I speak from experience.
 

Blackthorn

I'll Lock Up
Messages
4,407
Location
Oroville
Periodically I see a good blackthorn stick for sale and bemoan my current lack of available funds. I'd sure like to get one before we leave for Europe, though. Not just for the style involved but I suspect it would be useful for negotiating slippery Dutch and Belgian sidewalks. You know, the ones made of cobblestones back when Edward the Confessor was running around?
You can probably find one while you're there. At least that's something.
 

bjornborg11

New in Town
Messages
11
Location
WA
I hope this is the right place to post this if not I do apologize. However my grandfather’s B-day is coming up in May and I wanted to get him a really nice walking stick/cane. He is in his mid 80’s and is able to walk well on his own with no help. I really just want to get him one because he always talking about in his younger days how he had one. So I really would like to get him one. The only problem is where can I find one either online or in stores. He lives in Dallas/Ft. Worth Area. He is almost always is wearing a suit sometimes not the Jacket especially in the Texas heat. So I would like to get him one maybe two or three depending on price, that he can have for days where he is really dressed up and the other days where he is in his “casual” mode. Thanks
 

Shangas

I'll Lock Up
Messages
6,114
Location
Melbourne, Australia
Hi There,

The important thing about a walking-stick (apart from where to buy one, quality etc), is its SIZE.

A well-fitting walking-stick should reach to just around hip-level. The arm should be slightly bent, as should the wrist. If the arm is straight down and the wrist is bent at 90 degrees, it's too short. If the wrist is straight but your arm's really bent, it's obviously too long. You're looking for the equalibrium between the two.

So first question is - How tall is your grandpa and how long are his arms? You'll need to know that to figure out what size to buy him.

Oh...and make sure your grandpa's open to the idea of a walking-stick. He might take it as an insult on his age. I remember my dad bought my grandmother a walking-stick once (after she had a fall). The moment she got better, she sold it. She refused to use it, or even keep it around for possible future use.
 

texjake

New in Town
Messages
1
Location
Texas
searching for 30 yr old cane

I hope it is not to late to post this. I am search of the mfg of this cane that I have been using for over 30 yrs in hopes that someone on the web can help me track it down. I am not sure what exactly the handle is made of because it is coated with that plastic synthetic rubber coating like you would find on channel-lock pliers, but my coating is hard & smooth now after 30 yrs of use. The cane part is a non-adjustable 5/8" piece of aluminum. I have not attempted to remove the handle from the cane for fear of damaging something that I depend on daily to get around. If any has ever seen another cane like this or know where I can find the mfg of this cane please let me know. I tried to upload some pics of it but it seems that they did not come thru on this post. Thanks!
 
Last edited:
Messages
11,333
Location
Southern California
The important thing about a walking-stick (apart from where to buy one, quality etc), is its SIZE.

A well-fitting walking-stick should reach to just around hip-level. The arm should be slightly bent, as should the wrist. If the arm is straight down and the wrist is bent at 90 degrees, it's too short. If the wrist is straight but your arm's really bent, it's obviously too long. You're looking for the equalibrium between the two.

So first question is - How tall is your grandpa and how long are his arms? You'll need to know that to figure out what size to buy him.
You're absolutely correct that a cane should be the appropriate length for it's designated user, but your method for arriving at that length is a bit vague. Here's a general "rule of thumb" for getting the proper measurement:

a. Have the user wear his/her usual walking shoes.
b. Have the user stand naturally upright as much as possible.
c. Have the user's arms fall to the sides naturally with a normal relaxed bend at the elbow.
d. Using a tape measure or yard stick, measure the distance from the user's wrist joint (bottom crease at the wrist) down to the floor; round up to the nearest half inch (slightly too long is generally better than slightly too short).

BTW, I use a cane on a semi-regular basis because of back problems, so I'm speaking from personal experience when I say a properly-fitted cane is far better than one that is not.
 

Gin&Tonics

Practically Family
Messages
899
Location
The outer frontier
My biggest conundrum is that I would love to add an elegant walking stick to my daily attire, but as a young (not 30 yet!) gentleman of the 21st and not the 19th century, I think it would be exceptionally difficult in most circumstances to pull it off without looking totally absurd and appearing to "try too hard".

Not that I especially care what most folks think of me, but I feel that it would seem to be pure affectation on my part instead of what it is, a deep seated appreciation of the elegance and style of the Victorian era. Not to mention that my wife, who only just tolerates my "fancy clothes" as it is, would undoubtedly refuse to be seen in public with me carrying a walking stick/cane!

What's an old fashioned gent supposed to do? ^.^
 

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