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Before you buy, consider the points below:

It is advisable to discuss your seating needs with someone from the Health Service and be aware of the following considerations before purchasing a footstool:

  • Footstools can be height-adjustable, angled, or flat
  • Footstools may not effectively reduce lower leg swelling
  • Movement is the best way to reduce lower leg swelling. Be aware that the use of a footstool can lead to longer periods of inactivity and can make it more difficult to get in and out of the chair.
  • Sitting for long periods increases the risk of pressure damage, pain, and poor posture
  • To effectively reduce leg and ankle swelling, the ankles should be positioned level with or higher than the level of the heart. This position is best achieved on the bed so a period of bed rest during the day is a more effective method of reducing lower leg swelling.
  • Positioning a footstool can be difficult unless the person has a carer with them to place it correctly
  • The position of the legs on a footstool can cause the person to slide down in their chair especially if they have tight hamstrings – this can lead to shear pressure damage and poor posture
  • If the footstool is incorrectly positioned, there can be a risk of pressure damage on the heels or pressure behind the Achilles tendon.

If you decide a footstool is the best option to meet your needs then choose a footstool that adjusts to the position of your legs.

Please refer to our list of suppliers for purchase of a footstool.

For additional advice about good posture in seating, please see our ‘Taking Care in Sitting‘ guidance for reference.