The Ultimate Guide to Buying a Rolling Walker
Are you looking for a guide to buying a rolling walker?.
Choosing the right rollator either for yourself or a loved one can be time consuming and overwhelming because of the enormous amount of information out there.
Recommended read: Best rollators for Seniors
After I went through that process when I was buying one for a friend, I have decided to compile this ultimate guide to buying a rolling walker,hoping that it might be of help to you too.
What is a walker and a rollator?
A walker or a walking frame is a tool that the elderly or disabled person use to maintain balance or stability. It serves as an additional support for them while they walk.
Walkers started appearing in the 1950s and the first patent was awarded to a US citizen called William Cribbes Robb in 1953 with the name “walking aid” .
As years went by, rollators,wheeled walkers, rollator walkers or rolling walkers as they are commonly referred to was invented by Aina Wafalk in 1978, who was a polio sufferer. These are modified version of a traditional walker. A rolling walker is a walker with wheels.So instead of lifting the a traditional walker as you move, you simple just push it. It comes with adjustable heights and frames.
So lets see,
Who Needs a Rolling Walker?
Rollator walker was designed to meet the needs of various people with different mobility problems.It is meant to help you walk properly and maintain balance. Don’t get me wrong though.
It is not a car or motor bike. It definitely will not take you anywhere; because it has no engine or fuel or batteries.
Some amount of work will have to come from you. You take control of the pace, direction while using your muscles to supply some power.
In essence, if you find it easy to move a chopping trolley, then you will definitely find using a rolling walker a breeze.They were designed with the aim of giving their owners independence and not to make dependent on others.
Rollator walkers were designed to be used in both indoors and outdoors. They can be used on uneven surfaces as well as support high weight capacities.
Rolling walkers come in different forms. We have the 3 wheeled rolling walkers, 4 wheeled rolling walkers, you can find 3 wheel rollators with seats, 4 wheel walkers with seats.rolling walkers with basket or bag,walking stick holder,oxygen tank holder,etc. They options are many you choose what is best for your needs.
Rolling walkers; how do you know which is right for you?
Are you wondering which rolling walker might be good for you?,Well there are some important factors to take into consideration when you decide to purchase a rollator.
- Weight Capacity
What’s the point of owning a wheeled walker if it cannot support your weight.So it is one of the key factors to take note of before you buy your rolling walker.
If the weight is too small for you, you are simple going to crashed it.Which will also crash your pocket, you know what I mean.
There are lightweight rolling walkers, heavyweight rolling walkers with seats and among others.Here are the key factors to consider before buying a rollator.
Knowing your height is important for selecting the right rollator for you.There are wheeled walkers for short people also know as junior or petite rolling walkers. You can also find rolling walkers for tall people as well.
Majority of rolling walkers offer you the ability to adjust the height. The ideal way to get your height right for the rollator is to measure from the floor to your hands with elbows slightly bent.
- Seat width
Some people are naturally bulkier than others. So it is important to check the seat width.Choose a wheeled walker with a seat that you can fit in and feel comfortable.
Most standard rollators have seat widths varying between 13 to 15 inches.Also check the armrest to ensure your arms can rest comfortable on them.
- Rolling walker brakes
Can you easily get hold of your brakes, what is going to stop you..?. You might consider getting brakes that are easy to operate and work quickly. You don’t want to be in front of danger and you cant even stop.
The are two types of brakes you find in rollators; the loop brakes and the push down brakes.
- Push down brakes
These kind of brakes work by operating a downward pressure on the spring loaded frame as you lean forward on it. Due to the stopping of any forward movement the back wheels are interrupted.
If you have heavy reliance on a rollator or if you are a petite user, these type of brakes may not be suitable for you. because heavy users tend to lean on the rolling walker frame for more support and the petite person might not have enough strength to apply the brakes.
- Look brakes
These kind of brakes are like that of your normal bicycle brakes.The loop brakes provides greater stability than the push down brakes. They are cable style brakes which requires simultaneous use of both hands and squeezing action. they are the most common one you find in rolling walkers these days.
- Handle height
It is important to check this feature be to be sure you feel comfy when using it. Most wheeled walkers do have height adjustment feature.If you are tall, you might want to check this because you don’t what to bend in on unhealthy position while using the rollator.Same applies to short people. You don’t want to be straining yourself in order to reach for the handles.
If stability and balance are your problems, then it is recommended you go for the 4 wheeled walker with a seat.Because it offers greater stability than the 3 wheeled walker. The three wheeled rollators are best for maneuvering.
- Weight of the rollator
If you own a rollator there will come a time you need to lift it either into your car.Do you have a caregiver and how much weight can the person or you lift?. Which makes it important to check how much the rollator weighs.
- Indoors and outdoors
Although most wheeled walkers are designed for use in both indoors and outdoors. The large sized wheeled rollators are more suitable for outdoors because they are easy to maneuver pavements, grass and gravel. The 8 inches wheels are good for outdoors.
The small wheeled walkers are much better for indoors and they weigh less that than the heavy wheeled rollators.
Rolling Walker Accessories
If you are a person who is easily tired, you might want to consider getting a rolling walker with a seat. Some even have an armrest and backrest to assist with sitting and standing up.
- Shopping basket or bag
This makes it easy to carry things from place to place while using your rolling walker. You can find bags and baskets of different sizes.
Open wire baskets makes it easy to load and unload while the under-seat tote bags provide you with the privacy you need for your purse and other stuff you want to keep private.
If the basket is too low on the rollator, it might be difficult to reach. Especially, people with waist problems.
- Oxygen tank holder
If you need to have an oxygen tank with you, then an oxygen tank holder for your rolling walker will be a convenience. There are options to replace your basket with oxygen tank holder instead of just plunking it in the basket.
- Walking stick holder
There are moments that you might find your rollator unable to pass through tight spaces. Under such circumstances, it is much convenient to have a cane or a walking stick with you.So, you can get a cane holder for easy movement.
- Cup Holder
You can easily obtain a cup holder for your drinks.Which makes it convenient to store your coffee or cold drink while you are on the move.
My Final Thoughts on Buying a Rolling Walker
Using a rollator is not one of those something most people will ever dream of. But there comes a time in one’s life you don’t have much options. Especially, if you suffer from instability and balance issues. Whether it is old age or accident.
Purchasing the right rolling walker will offer you the opportunity for independence, freedom to move by yourself,to rest when you are tired and feel more safe.
You can still enjoy the social functions and be part of the community again and even take your grandchildren and the dog out for a walk.
Rollators give you the opportunity to exercise and stay healthy again instead of staying at home all the time and watching all the fun in the world pass you by.
It is your turn. If you found the ultimate guide to buying rolling walker helpful, leave your thoughts below and let’s keep in touch.
Image credits:www.co-operativeindependentliving.co.uk and amazon.com
Josephine Dassah is a Content Manager at SeniorHealthStores.com. She is an Electrical EngineeringGrad, Healthy lifestyleenthusiast and She is interested in things that bring the wellbeing of others. She believes through her writing, she can share valuable information and contribute to the quality of life of other people.
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