Here are some points to consider before you watch the video.

A lot of materials can be used to create rigidity to immobilize a a broken leg or an arm. Sticks or trekking poles can be uncomfortable and create “hot spots” that turn into sores/open wounds). Soft materials are better but become rigid when you compress them. Sitting pads or sleeping pads, emptied back packs, or duffle bags can all be used to create great splinting material.  The video shows how to combine soft materials with sticks or trekking poles.

You must immobilize from the foot (in its natural position) to a location up past the knee (in its slightly bent natural position). Remember we immobilize the joint(s) below and above the area with a possible broken bone. When splinted properly, neither the ankle or knee joints should be able to bend or move.

You need to avoid cutting off blood circulation when you splint. In this video, note that the shoe is removed, toes (with socks on) are accessible to periodically test for circulation (is the foot warm), sensation (can the patient tell you which toes or area of the foot you are touching), and movement (can toes still be wiggled).

The splint is created alongside the injured leg BEFORE it is applied to the injured leg. This approach reduces the patient’s pain and reduces the potential for further injury by applying the splint just once.

Another approach is to create the splint on the uninjured leg first to figure out the configuration of the materials in the splint and the procedure for getting it on the patient in the least painful way possible. In other words, practice on the uninjured leg before you apply it to the injured leg, if the patient can tolerate it.

Here is the Video Link

It is recommended that you pause the video at 10 seconds in and read the list of treatment principles carefully. Then watch the video and see how the subsequent treatment follows these principles.

This video shows you how to use the materials at hand to fashion a splint and then shows some variations using different materials you may have with you on your hike. Note WFA responders typically use cravats (lightweight triangular strips of material used for splints, slings, and swaddling), but often times don’t carry them. Other materials are usually used. Cutting  silver mylar space blankets into strips lengthwise creates very strong cravat-like materials to secure a splint. The strips should be 3-4 inches wide to avoid causing soft tissue injury from tightening. You’ll see other options like wool scarves, utilized in this video.

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