Buying the Perfect Rollator for Your Needs

Mobility issues are a concern for people as they age as well as those with certain medical conditions. Often, those who have trouble walking feel left out of activities because they’re not able to get around comfortably or safely. Many people with mobility issues turn to a rollator for assistance getting around, particularly outdoors. This helps them participate in events and activities more safely. Before purchasing a rollator for yourself or a loved one, there are a few things consider ensuring you get the best one for your needs.

What is a Rollator?

 

Simply put, a rollator is a heavy-duty walker with wheels. Rollators also comes with additional accessories such as a seat or brakes, even a shopping basket! They’re strong and durable as well as being easy to manoeuvre in small spaces. Typically, rollators are intended for outdoor use and are far more robust than traditional walkers. Rollators are available in adult, pediatric, and bariatric versions.

Things to Consider for Safety Before Buying a Rollator

 

 For anyone with mobility concerns, safety is paramount. Keeping several safety factors in mind when purchasing a rollator helps ensure that the one you buy is best suited to keep you safe.

 

1.    Brakes. Brakes should be easy to grip and easy to apply. If you live in a cold climate, can you still apply the brakes wearing gloves or mittens? Many people who use a rollator also find it comfortable to lean against the device to rest. If that sounds like something you’d like to do, be sure there’s a parking brake or locking hand brakes to keep the rollator still.

2.    Handles. Handles need to be easy to grip and the right size for your hands. Also, check the height. You want to be standing comfortably, not bending or reaching to grasp the handles.

3.    Seat. Of course, the seat should be comfortable. In addition, it needs to be strong and appropriately sized for your body. Depending on your own stability level, you may want to find a rollator seat that also has a backrest as it provides additional support.

Other Things to Consider Before Buying a Rollator

 

Think about how you’ll be using your rollator. Your personal preferences and the places you’ll be using the rollator may mean you need to check for additional functional requirements prior to making your purchase.

 

1.    Ergonomics. While most people are familiar with this term as it relates to typing or lifting, it also applies how you stand or sit in your rollator. Check to see if the seat and handles move up and down to get you the proper fit. Also, ensure that you have enough room to step without hitting the wheels or frame of the rollator.

2.    Comfort. If you’re not comfortable, you probably won’t use it, so see how it feels to sit and stand for more than a few seconds.

3.    Storage. If you’re going to be traveling with your rollator, this may be of particular concern. How easily does it fold and unfold? Does the folded size fit nicely into your vehicle or another storage area?

4.    Accessories. Think about what you might want to carry with you. Most of the time, you can get accessories from your rollator that make it easier. Options include trays, baskets, under-seat bags, a holder for a cane, water bottle, or umbrella, or even a lamp!

5.    Other special features. Will you be navigating rough terrain or sidewalk curbs regularly? A rollator with curb-climbing features may be necessary. Or if you’re grip strength is somewhat weak due to arthritis or other illness, you’ll want to look for handles that have special handles that increase grip and stability.

6.    Wheel count. You can get 3 wheels or 4. Three wheel options are usually easier to fold and store, however, they don’t usually come with seats and cannot be used on channel ramps.

7.    Strength. Ensure that the maximum user weight is enough to support you. Bariatric rollators also come with reinforced frames and wider seats for additional security.

 

Buying and using a rollator is a great way to add mobility and safety to your life. By taking these things into consideration before you purchase one, you ensure that you get the rollator that best suits your needs and lifestyle.

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Please note: VAT is removed in the checkout process

In the UK, disabled people do not have to pay VAT when buying certain disability aids and services (This can be claimed by friend or family member purchasing on their behalf). Not everything supplied to disabled people is necessarily zero-rated for VAT. Goods and services on which you do not have to pay VAT are usually known as 'zero-rated' or 'eligible for VAT relief.

Who is eligible for VAT relief?

You must be 'chronically sick or disabled' to qualify for VAT relief. The HMRC comment on this is as follows. A person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they either:

VAT Relief on our Disability Aids

All products on the Aids for Mobility website are flagged with an option to claim VAT relief during Checkout if it applies to that item. When you add a zero-rated product or service to your Basket, you will be asked to tick a checkbox to confirm that you, or the person for whom you are buying the item, are eligible for VAT Relief.

How VAT relief works

If you are claiming VAT Relief you will be asked to complete an extra few questions during Checkout, where we will ask you to provide brief details of your disability and confirmation that the product is for 'personal or domestic use'. We will keep a record of this declaration along with your order details. You can then buy the product(s) in your Basket at a price that excludes VAT. You will be asked to make this declaration each time you place an order that includes zero-rated products. It is a legal requirement that we record this information for every order, and we apologise for the inconvenience.

More information from HMRC

You can find out more about VAT Relief for disabled people on the HM Revenue and Customs website. If you cannot find the answer to your questions there or would prefer to speak to an adviser, you can call their Helpline on 0845 302 02 03.

The helpline is open from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday. (Closed weekends and bank holidays).