Positives

N

Benefits they bring to people’s lives.

N

Gives you a confidence boost to go out to meet up with friends.

N

The added bonus of exercise and the effect on a person’s well being from seeing people and getting fresh air is immeasurable.

N

The 4-Wheel Rollator with a seat enables you to stop and rest.

N

Being able to travel and get out and about has a big impact on both your physical abilities and your mental health.

N

Offers greater stability and balance by providing a wider support base.

N

Aiding your walking pattern in terms of speed and evenness of stride.

N

Increases your confidence to your walking ability.

N

Weight redistribution. This may help reduce pain in the back and the joints, muscles and ligaments in the lower limbs.

N

White walking sticks are available as walking aids for those who are blind, partially sighted or have difficulty mobilising.

Negatives 

M

Hard to store when not in use.

Walking Aids Key Features

The choice of mobility equipment available for those living with mobility issues varies greatly depending on the range of motion. For example, if your mobility is mildly affected due to a condition such as osteoarthritis, then simple mobility walking aids, such as a walking stick or crutch will be in order.  For easy movement, you should consider a walker or roller. However, if you are living with a disability which makes it difficult for you to move without assistance you should consider a wheelchair.

What is a walking Aid?

If you feel insecure when you walk, experience weakness or pain, or have had a fall, then you may be considering getting a walking aid.

As traditional walking sticks only have a single point of contact with the floor they tend to be used by those with moderately reduced balance.

There are many other aids available such as the walkers, rollers, walking frames and a wide selection of wheelchairs.

Walking Aid Design and Build

  • Walking wooden sticks traditionally have a crook handle and are cut to the correct height. They are available in various diameters and strengths which are designed to take different loads. They are not as adaptable as metal sticks.
  • Metal sticks tend to be stronger and are available with right angle handles, crook shaped handles or anatomically shaped handgrips
  • Folding sticks are lightweight metal sticks with sectioned shafts that enable them to be folded up for storage.
  • Walking sticks with a seat are particularly useful for people who need to rest periodically. They are not recommended for people when need to take a lot of weight through the stick.
  • Features to consider when choosing a walking frame or rollator :
  • It is very important that brakes on rollators can be operated quickly and easily by the user. There are several types of brakes and includes pressure brakes, cable brakes, locking brakes and all need to have good handgrip.  However, someone with weak or painful hands or wrists will find it difficult to push down on these. Alternatives are available.

Related: Crutch Reviews

Walking Aid Features and Set-up

There are many different aids for mobility available, designed to suit individual requirements. If you are looking for a little extra support when walking to the shops, a 3-wheel Rollator will help reduce the risk of you falling and it includes a built-in basket for you to store your shopping in.

Walking Aid Prices

  • Walking sticks from £10 to £50
  • Walking frames – £35 to £65
  • 4 wheel rollator with padded seat – £60 – £100
  • Scooters – Do your research and visit several outlets.

Related: Walking Stick Review

Why Buy a Walking Aid

Walking equipment is usually for one of two purposes: as part of a rehabilitation programme if you if you are recovering from an injury or operation or as a long-term aid to mobility if you have ongoing difficulty with walking.

The rehabilitation process is a gradual progression towards independent and unassisted walking. The ultimate aim of a rehabilitation programme is for you to regain as much independence and safely as possible in your walking, preferable without walking equipment

Sometimes complete recovery is not possible and in these situations, mobility equipment may be required for long-term use.

If you need to purchase a wheelchair/scooter it is best to locate a centre where you can try several models, and to be sure you feel confident and competent “behind the wheel” and can manage simple manoeuvres. For some people, a lightweight, easy to load in the boot of the car is the right choice, but those won’t be as good for longer distances or on less than perfect terrain. Look carefully at how for the battery will last. Often the scooters that dismantle easily are less robust. Also, bear in mind space you have to stores and charge the scooter may limit your choice.

If you need to use crutches or a walker make sure that the scooter can carry these safely

Look for taking out insurance, not just for the machine, but for any accidents you might be involved in! Ridden carelessly a scooter can be a danger!

Walking Aid Verdict

  • They help you travel and get out which has a big impact on both your physical abilities and your mental strength.
  • Make for a safer home environment by helping to prevent spills and trips.
  • It enables you to meet up with friends and family.
  • Are able to take part in activities outside your home