This page is dedicated to questions and answers -and even the occasional anecdotal story! -about life with an upper limb deficiency.
Empowering others: sharing experiences, ideas; offering creative solutions to common challenges.
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Thursday, August 19, 2010
How Do You Do... Shoe-tying?
Let's talk about tying shoes. It's been one of the most frequently-asked questions (#1 is how do you put on panty-hose, but we don't quite know each other well enough to discuss that yet!)
Shoe-tying has been made easier of course with the advent of velcro and elastic laces.
That being said, I like to tie my own shoes, especially if they match the rest of my ensemble!
Since I am typically wearing my prosthesis, let's examine the steps involved:
1. I cross laces at the onset of the task--it saves a step:
2. I use my hand to push the (left hand) lace under the crossed laces:
3. Then I form a loop with my left hand:
4. And I wind the lace held by my TD around it, and push it through the 'hole' created by the lace with my left hand :
5. I then grasp both laces with each hand (yes, I often refer to my prosthesis as my hand; it is truly an extension of my 'self') and pull laterally:
Tout fini! (All finished!)
That wasn't so hard, was it?
I'd love to show you how I tie shoes without my prosthesis... I use basically the same staps, only I use the crook of my elbow to 'grasp' the lace. Positioning is key (remember that; I tend to say that alot...)!
1. Cross the laces;
2. Use the hand to push the lace under the crossed laces;
3. Form the loop with the hand;
4. Wind the lace with the crook of the elbow and push it through the 'hole' created by the lace with the hand;
5. Then grasp both laces with each side--hand and elbow crook-- and pull laterally:
Fait accompli! (Task accomplished!)
Again.... easy! -Though the old adage, "practice makes perfect" certainly carries alot of weight! I remember being 5 and 6 years old and practicing ad nauseum tying shoes with and without my prosthesis. I remember being so angry and crying in frustration because I just couldn't get it together. But, I also remember the sweetness of victory; of practicing, correcting error, perfecting technique until I got it. The sweetness of victory; of overcoming and being able to achieve.... beautiful. I re-live it now; I re-live it in the successes of those empowered.
Hooray! What shall we practice next??? Let me know; otherwise it's my pick!