BACKGROUND: This paper introduces a percutaneous reduction technique using one or two Steinman pin(s) to reduce sagittally unstable intertrochanteric fractures. METHODS: A fracture was defined as a sagittally unstable intertrochanteric fracture when posterior sagging of a distal fragment and flexion of the proximal fragment worsens after usual maneuvers for a closed reduction. Of 119 intertrochanteric fractures treated from June 2007 to December 2008, twenty-one hips showed sagittal instability. The sagittal displacement was reduced using a Steinmann pin as a joystick, and stabilized with a nail device. Nineteen hips were followed up for more than one year. The clinical and radiological results were reviewed in 19 hips and compared with those of the remaining cases. RESULTS: The demographics were similar in both groups. The mean anesthetic time did not differ. Although the pre-injury and final activity levels were significantly lower in the study group, the degree of recovery was the same. No clinical complications related to this technique were encountered. Radiologically, the reduction was good in all hips in both groups. Union was obtained in all cases without any time differences. CONCLUSIONS: This less invasive reduction technique is simple and safe to use for this type of difficult fracture.