The key differences between a walker and a rollator

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When you have trouble walking or are at risk for falling, you might need an assistance device. There are many mobility aids out there designed to provide extra stability and help with balance.

A wheelchair might be too much help, while a walker or a rollator is enough for you to get around. Walkers and rollators both help with walking, but your agility plays an essential role in deciding which device is best.

When to use a walker

A walker is a mobility aid that has a frame and legs that you lift with each step. As long as you are strong enough to maneuver it, a walker helps prevent a fall when you have balance issues. It also provides extra support when you have any weakness in your legs.

Your physical therapist may recommend a walker if you can’t support your weight on one of your legs or need a slower pace when moving around. Just keep in mind that it can be exhausting to get around with one and plan frequent stops to rest.

Using a rollator

A rollator comes with wheels at the foot of each leg, letting you walk with a more normal gait. If you need a little stability, but otherwise get around fine, a rollator might be a useful tool.

Some rollators come with seats so you can get off your feet, while others transition into a transport chair.

Try a rollator walker

Hybrid models like a rollator walker may have the frame of a traditional walker along with wheels on two of the legs.

The wheels give you the option to push the walker along flat ground and lift when necessary. Before selecting a mobility aid, talk over the possibilities with your physical therapist or doctor.