Thursday, December 15, 2011

Kinnus on Crutches- A Survival Guide

I have now experienced 3 conventions and part of an encampment on crutch so I feel more than qualified to write this guide.


First off packing can be a challenge. If you are having surgery and you know ahead of time that you will be on crutches pack ahead of time what you can. If you have to pack while on crutches put everything on the floor, don't try to use a table it will only make it harder.

The bigger problem than packing with luggage is carrying it. I suggest that you have one friend who will hold onto your luggage, especially if you are traveling using public transportation. If it stays with one person you are less likely to loose it. There is no way my suitcase would have made it to fall boards weekend if it wasn't for Micah.

Food and Drinks and other Stuff

Most of the time food at conventions is served buffet style which is an issue if you are using crutches. Again go to get food with a friend, than let your friend carry it back for you. If someone is sitting near you and is going to get a drink ask them to get you one too. I personally made sure all my friends at Leadership Convention (which I went to 3 days after knee surgery) knew how I liked my tea and that way if they were getting some for them selves they would grab me a cup.

Shabbat Issues

All people on crutches know that elevators are essential to life. Staying on say the 4th floor of a hotel on Shabbat can pose a problem. Make sure you know how to go up stairs on crutches prior to the convention, and when going up the stairs make sure someone who is willing to go at your pace is with you. Not only for safety but you will want someone to talk to and who can cheer you on.

If the convention is home hospitality make sure you talk to your regional director. If you don't need to walk and there are some houses where people are driving stay there. If you are shomer shabbos or everyone is walking make sure you are staying as close as possible to the Shul.

Services can pose another problem, it is a lot of standing...and then sitting and standing again. If you can stand you should. If it hurts to be up right or is just too hard to get up and pack down it is ok to sit the whole time. I didn't even attempt to stand during services at Leadership.

Other Random Things

If you are at a camp make sure you are never walking through the woods and similar areas alone.

I wanted to be self sufficient my first convention on crutches, but I would of been so much better off if I accept more peoples help. People are nicer to you when you are on crutches so you might as well take advantage of the only good thing about crutches. If someone ask you if you need help just say yes.

Be creative, if everyone is playing mini tanks you can too, only you should play the hand version.

Most importantly HAVE FUN!!!

Shockingly one of the only pictures of me on crutches at Fall

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