There are a lot of different mobility aids on the market today, and one product that you may be interested in purchasing is a walker.
As the name indicates, a mobility walker will support you while walking, helping you to get from A to B and maintain your independence. However, there are a lot of walkers on the market today, and so it can be difficult to narrow down your search and determine what walker is going to be right for you.
In this guide, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about walkers, including who they are suitable for, the different types of walkers available, and the best walkers on the market today, and much more.
Table of Contents
What is a walker?
So let’s start by explaining what a walker is. A walker, also referred to as a walking frame, is a tool for people who need additional support to maintain stability or balance while walking.
A walker has all four legs, which will all stay in contact with the ground when the user is moving. To move forward, the walker needs to be lifted. Some walkers will have wheels, others don’t.
Who needs a walker?
So, who would need a walking device, such as a walker? Well, there tends to be three basic reasons why an individual would require a walking device. These are as follows:
Examples include the following:
- Slow reflexes to changes in body sway or position
- Low blood pressure
- Neurological conditions, for instance, diabetic neuropathy, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, or stroke
Decreased endurance or fatigue
Examples include the following:
- Frailness associated with aging
- Systemic conditions
- Deconditioned physical fitness due to an extended illness
- Shortness of breath and respiratory conditions
You cannot reliably stand on both or one of your legs
Examples include the following:
- Hip precautions after surgery
- Pain linked to poor circulation and arthritis
- Wounds that are slow to heal on the lower legs or feet
- Fractures that are non-healing or healing
What are the benefits of a walker?
There are many benefits associated with using a walker. This includes the following:
What is the difference between walkers and rollators?
A lot of people get confused between walkers and rollators, struggling to understand which product is right for them from the two.
While some walkers, namely knee walkers, may have two wheels on the legs, a rollator will have four wheels, whereas a walker will not. This is the main difference between the two.
A lot of people refer to rollators as rolling walkers with seats, so this gives you an indication of the difference between the two. You can refer to the image below to see what a rollator looks like:
The table below highlights the key features of both products to help you get a better understanding:
They partially support body weight, and fully support balance
They should not be used to help with your balance or to support your body weight
There are numerous accessories available to assist the user with movement
They do not need to be lifted for the user to move around
They do not have a place for you to site down
They tend to have a seat built into the frame
They feature wheels at the end of every leg
Do you need a walker or a rollator?
Now that you understand the differences between walkers and rollators, it is vital to determine which one is going to be right for you.
A walker is generally a lot better at holding your weight if you have balance problems, although they are not as easy to move forward because they do need to be lifted up. The reason for this is because the legs of the walker touch all of the floor directly, creating more stability, which is vital for individuals that struggle with their balance.
The partial support for your weight that is offered by a walker can happen while you are standing still and walking around too.
On the flip side, stability is not really offered via a rollator, so it is not suitable if you find it difficult to stand up or you cannot keep your balance. If this applies, a walker is a must.
A rollator is more suitable for someone who can keep their balance, yet needs to have a place to carry necessities or needs to sit down on a frequent basis.
If your grip or arms are weak, a rollator is a good option. As you must be able to lift up the walker and move it forward before you can step forward yourself, arm strength and grip are needed when using a walker.
Hopefully, this will help you to determine which of these mobility aids is going to be right for your requirements. However, if you do need a helping hand, please do not hesitate to get in touch and we would be more than happy to help you in any way we can.
Hybrid rollator walkers
There have been hybrid rollator walkers created for those who feel like they need the benefits of both products.
These are the walkers that have two legs at the back, which touch the ground, like a walker, and then two legs at the front that have wheels attached, like a rollator. This means the walker only needs to be lifted partially to move forward.
Walking is much easier on the arms with these products because the two heels at the front will carry the weight of the user. Weight and balance can also be supported partially with a hybrid rolling walker.
Nevertheless, you do need to be careful, as the two wheels at the front can roll forward at a quick pace if too much strain and weight is placed on them.
Features of a hybrid rolling walker
What are the different types of walkers available today?
Not only do you have to decide between a walker and rollator, but if you have decided that a rollator is going to be right for you, there are actually different types for you to select from as well. We are going to go over some of the main ones in detail below.
A standard walker is pretty much what you would expect. It contains the four legs that are stable on the ground while you move. You then need to lift the walker and place it down again.
These walkers are designed for any individuals that have trouble with stability and balance, whether disabled or elderly.
What is a knee walker? Sometimes referred to as knee scooters, this type of walker comes with a sturdy pad that supports the user’s knee.
These walkers have been designed as an innovative pain-free alternative to walking sticks, crutches, and standard walking sticks.
To use this type of walker, your injured leg will be mounted onto the big knee pad, and you will then use your injured leg to stride and push yourself around.
As a consequence, this type of walker is designed for those who have problems with one leg, yet their other leg has the strength and stability to be able to move them around with ease.
A pediatric walker is one that has been designed for use by children and/or teens.
When children require assistance with walking or standing due to a condition or disability, it is vital that they use supportive devices like walkers so that they can move around.
These devices are also suitable for children who need to strengthen the muscles in the legs, as well as those that require assistance with step length, cadence, stride, and alignment.
Youngsters living with developmental disorders, such as spina bifida and cerebral palsy, rely on these walking aids on a daily basis. They also provide daily aid to those suffering from musculoskeletal impairments, such as myelodysplasia and osteogenesis imperfecta.
There are also bariatric walkers available. These walkers are waist-high, wide, and extra-sturdy to accommodate larger individuals who may need added support to maintain their balance or stability while walking.
Like standard walkers, there are different types of bariatric walkers available, including those with two wheels, as well as accessories that can aid movement. However, the big difference here is that the frames have been designed and constructed for those carrying extra weight.
What should you consider when purchasing a walker?
With so many different walkers to choose from today, it probably does not come as much of a surprise to learn that there are various factors to keep in mind while determining the best one for you.
The best walkers of 2020
With so many different walkers on the market today, it can be a little bit overwhelming when it comes time to purchase. There is no need to worry, though, as we have sourced some of the best wa;lkers of 2020 to give you a helping hand.
Compass Health: ProBasics Bariatric Two-Button Release Folding Walker, Aluminum, No Wheels
We’re going to start off with a traditional walker, which is perfect for anyone seeking a no thrills walker, which does exactly what you would expect it to.
This walker is sold as two pieces, meaning it is very easy to put together, and it has a maximum weight capacity of 500 lbs.
It has been designed to provide a durable and strong design, with optimal strength for the user. You can be sure that this is the case because your purchase will be backed up by a limited lifetime warranty.
If you do want to add wheels to this walker, it is possible, as you can elect to have five-inch wheels added. It is also worth noting that this walker is available in both junior and adult sizes.
There are a number of other features that make this walker a good choice for anyone who is looking for one. It comes with rear glide caps, which make it easy for the walker to slide over most surfaces if you do go for the wheel option.
The hand grip is made from vinyl, which has been contoured to provide long-lasting wear and added comfort. Both sides operate independently to enable easy movement through narrow spaces, as well as greater stability while standing.
This walker also comes with adjustable height settings, and it is easy to store too. This is thanks to the push-button folding mechanism, which is simple to use, providing an audible click when the walker is locked.
Kaye Products: Kaye Anterior Support Walkers
If you are looking for a walker for child or teenage use, this one from Kaye Products is well worth considering, and we have a great 30 percent discount available at the moment.
You can choose from three different sizes when purchasing this walker: extra-small, small, and large. If you are unsure regarding which size is going to be right for your child, please do not hesitate to get in touch and we would be more than happy to help.
The table below gives you the measurements for each model:
19 - 26 inches
22 - 36 inches
30 - 47 inches
This walker has been designed for any child who is able to take steps and support weight on their legs, yet does not have the shoulder control, body control, or balance to use a more conventional walker. These walkers are particularly beneficial for users with severe ataxia, athetosis, or spasticity.
There are a number of extras that are available with this walker as well, including swivel limiters and adjustable resistance one-way ratchet wheels.
Aside from the various customization options, there are some other reasons why this is a good choice for anyone seeking a pediatric walker. This includes the adjustable height and angle adjusts, as well as the ability to adjust the width between the side cushions and the handgrips.
Extra security is also offered via the external ratchets on the rear wheels, which stop the walker from talking a roll backward.
You can also transport and store this walker with ease, as it has a simple fold mechanism.
North Coast Medical: Guardian Red Dot Heavy Duty Walker
If you are looking for a durable, heavy duty walker, this option from North Coast Medical is certainly worth considering.
You may notice the unique design of this walker, which has a steel @[email protected] cross brace. This is an exclusive Guardian brace, which has been patented by the brand. It is made of chrome-plated aluminum, which is lightweight yet robust.
The walker also comes with a dual-folding mechanism, which has been patented. This makes it easy for you to fold the walker by depressing the tab with your arm, palm, or finger.
As is the case with a lot of the walkers on the market today, you do have the option of adding wheels to this walker should you use. When purchasing a Red Dot Walker, five-inch and three-inch wheels will both fit. You can buy Walker Wheels, which are sold in pairs.
In terms of weight, the walker itself weighs 7/5 lbs, and it can support 400 lbs.
The width in between the hand grips is 19 inches, with the height being adjustable. You can adjust it from 32.25 inches to 39.25 inches.
The walker has been designed for those that are between 5’5” and 6’4”.
North Coast Medical: Double Button Extra-Wide Adult Folding Bariatric Walker
The final walker that we recommend is a bariatric walker, which means that it has been designed for people who are obese or overweight.
If you are looking for a walker that is strong and durable in construction so that you will get the extra support you need, this is certainly a good choice. It has been designed to accommodate individuals up to 500 lbs, and it has a deeper and a wider frame.
There are other features that make this walker a good choice, including the rear glide caps, which mean it can be used on all surfaces and the precision design, which means extra strength has been added while adding minimal weight. The vinyl contoured hand grip is another standout feature.
In terms of specifications, the height can be adjusted from 32 inches to 39 inches. The overall width is 24 inches, and the width inside of the hand grip measures 20 inches.
You also have the option of paying for this walker in manageable monthly payments if you would prefer. This is an option available with a lot of the mobility aids for sale on our website.
Why buy your walker from Scooters N Chairs?
While you can buy walkers from many different online sources today, it is imperative to choose a company with care. When you purchase from Scooters N Chairs, you can have the complete peace of mind that all of our products are of the highest standard, providing you with the mobility assistance required for many years to come.
Here are some of the benefits of using our service:
Contact us today for more information
If you have any queries or concerns about any of the products we have for sale, or you need help placing an order, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us for more information. We are always happy to help.
You can send an email to [email protected] and we will get back to you as soon as possible. Alternatively, you can give us a call on 1-800-674-8395 to speak to one of our polite and professional advisors.