Rollators and walkers help maintain and increase mobility for many senior adults. Often, aging brings a decline in mobility which can often be alleviated though the use of a rollator or walker. Of course, with a rollator, there are certain safety tips which should be observed to stay safe. Let’s explore safety tips you or your loved one should follow when using his or her new rollator.
Standing Safely with a Rollator
Standing safely with a new rollator begins with ensuring the brakes are on (engaged). Next, while sitting comfortably on the edge of your chair, line up your toes with your seat. Place one hand on the chair and the other hand on the rollator to distribute your weight evenly. Putting all your weight on the rollator could cause it to move, slipping away from you. Use your legs to lean forward and raise up, while using your arms for support. When you are fully upright and have your balance, you are ready to release (unlock) the brakes and begin walking.
Walking Safely with a Rollator
Similar, though not exactly the same, walking with your rollator is like walking while pushing a shopping cart. Always keep your walker in front of you, about a foot ahead, gently pushing as you walk. Try to keep your steps even, to maintain your balance. Walking with a rollator is different, making each unique terrain you walk on seem like new territory.
As you approach varying outdoor areas, advance slowly until you gain your footing and learn how your rollator responds. Be aware of potential hazards such as uneven surfaces or unexpected inclines. Inside, use bathroom and kitchen counters as needed for extra support. In other areas, arrange your furnishings to allow for easy movement throughout your home with your rollator. Take care to keep pathways clear and always watch for obstacles like clothing, toys, rugs, pets, and children. While shopping, chose the elevator to move from floor to floor, never the escalator.
Turning and Stopping Without Incident
Turning or turning around with your rollator should be easy, as long as you remember you should always be facing forward when using it. When you need to turn completely around, you will need enough width available to make the turn. Always keep your body parallel with your rollator’s front bar and avoid twisting your body or back to make the turn.
Stopping and sitting down is much like standing safely though in reverse. Position yourself in front of the seat you have chosen, allowing the back of legs to slightly touch the seat. Balance yourself, moving the walk forward just enough to bend slightly. Lock your brakes. Reach behind you resting your hands on the arms of the chair for support and lower yourself slowly into the seat. When you in a public space, like a restaurant, you will need to fold or park your rollator, so it does not become a hazard to others. Family and friends can help, but if they are not available, ask the waitstaff for help to ensure your rollator isn’t blocking the flow of traffic.
Choose Shoes and Speed for Safety
While you want to stay in fashion, you’ll want to choose your shoes appropriately. You shouldn’t have to forgo your style to find attractive non-slip sneakers or shoes to wear, especially when the weather is wet, and surfaces may be slippery.
You’ll also want to be aware of your speed, adjusting as needed for bad weather, such as rainy conditions, and changing surfaces, such as inclines or bumpy terrain. When shopping, be aware of other shoppers, monitor your speed and don’t following to closely to avoid bumping into them should they stop suddenly.
Your Rollator and Transportation
In and around the Space Coast, when you need transportation, Stellar Transport can help get you and your rollator to your appointments on time safely.