Types of Rollators and Accessories
Posted September 26, 2015on:
Different Types of Rollators
There are different types of rollators to suit different needs.
- Three Wheel Rollator
Three wheel rollator has one front wheel and two back wheels. It is light, narrow, and easy to move around in areas with less moving space. The back wheels have the braking system to control the speed of the rollator or to stop it from moving forward. The brake system also has a lock feature to ensure the safety. The weight of lighter models of three wheel rollator is around 8 to 10 lbs. The heavy duty three wheel rollators, which are made of steel frame, have weight up to seventeen pounds.
- Four Wheel Rollator
The four wheel rollators are more stable than the three wheel rollators, but they tend to be heavier than three wheel rollators. They are also broader than three wheel rollators and therefore it is difficult to maneuver them in tight space.
- Bariatric or Heavy Duty Rollator
These types of rollators are designed specifically for heavy patients. They have the capacity to carry heavier weight and they also have broader seats to accommodate heavy weight patients. Since they have to carry heavy users, the frame of bariatric rollators is made of sturdy material. This makes them difficult to move around.
Why to Use Three Wheel Rollator?
Three wheel rollators are suitable for those who have moderate mobility issues and need support for moving around conveniently, but do not need the extra weight and stability of four wheel rollator. Now there are three wheel rollator models with seat, which can be used to sit when feeling tired.
Parts of Three Wheel Rollator
There are different models of three wheel rollators, but all of them essentially have these parts –
Three wheel rollators can be easily maneuvered around the obstructions inside and outside the house. Apart from the number of wheels, the size of wheels is also important. Three wheel rollators with smaller size of wheels such as six inches or less are suitable for smooth indoor surface. However, larger wheels are easy to maneuver and appropriate for both indoor surface and uneven outdoor surface.
Brake system in three wheel rollators makes the user feel in control. The brake system of the rollator should be designed in such a way so that it is easily reachable and can be operated effortlessly. There are three types of brake system in standard three wheeled rollators.
- The cable brake system is very similar to the brake system of a bicycle. The user can press the brake handle to stop the rollator.
- Reverse braking or the locking feature allows the brake to be locked until the brake handles are pressed to release the pressure. This saves the user from continuously keeping a grip on the brake handles. It also ensures the safety of the user by locking the brake when the user is trying to step down from or sit on the rollator.
- Optional brake systems: There are other optional brake systems in three wheel rollators. The slow-down brake system allows user to control the speed of the rollator when maneuvering on an inclined surface. The single hand brake system allows the user to use only one hand to operate the brake system. It is effective for those who have one hand stronger than the other.
Steel and aluminum are two materials with which the frame of the three wheel rollators are made of. Steel is sturdy and strong, but it is also heavy. Therefore it is best suited for heavy weight people. However, being heavier, it becomes difficult to carry around the three wheel rollators with steel frame. They are not suitable for people with weak arms or elderly users or caretakers. Aluminum is relatively lighter and can be easily pushed by light weight user. If the frame is foldable, it is easier to carry around the three wheel rollator in vehicles to different locations.
Usually the seat is the part of the four-wheel rollator and not the three-wheel rollator. However, there are companies that are coming up with the unique concept of three-wheel rollator with seat. You should look for the three wheel rollator with adjustable seat height. Another thing to consider is the material of the seat. If you want more comfort, then you should look for the padded and cushioned seat along with the backrest and armrest, instead of plastic seats which can be hard and uncomfortable. Also, make sure that that there is enough space between the handles of the three wheel rollator to let you sit down comfortably.
Many optional accessories are available with the three wheel rollators such as trays, backrest, leg rest and baskets or pouches for carrying items. Some of them also have a walking stick holder, oxygen tank holder and water bottle holder. The choice depends on your needs. A wire basket is good to carry personal items but it is more cumbersome and you will have to remove it when you are folding the rollator. A collapsible bag not only makes the three wheel rollator easier to carry but also safe for keeping personal items like moneybags and purse. A carrier for walking stick will make sure that you have your walking stick with you when you need to move in tighter spaces where it is difficult to take the three wheel rollator.