Happy new year readers!
It’s the start of a new year and also a new decade, which for some of us can mean big changes are on the horizon.
For some of you these changes could involve the need to replace some of you old mobility equipment, to put you on track for the next few years.
Now for those of you who frequently purchase mobility equipment and accessories you probably already know what to look out for.
But for those of you who are taking your first steps into this world, here are some of the factors to take into account when buying new mobility equipment.
This normally comes down to three questions –
– What options are available?
– Which is most suitable?
– How much will it cost?
What are your options?
When it comes down to mobility equipment you normally look towards the big 3. This features 3 of the most popular mobility aids – mobility scooters, rollators and wheelchairs.
Of course, there are other options as well however when it comes down to the most readily available mobility aids, these are what you tend to look for.
Among these lies a huge variety of different brands, models and specifications of equipment available on the market.
Therefore, it is important to research into what your new equipment is capable off. After all considering that mobility aids are a large long term investment, it is only natural as a consumer to want to get as much value out of a product as possible.
With that in mind let’s look at the suitability of the big three mobility aids.
Option 1 – Rollators / Walkers
We are getting this one out of the way first as rollators and walkers are of the more user-friendly mobility aids available on the market.
All rollators and walkers are self-propelled mobility aids, with their lightweight frame making it easy allow the user to propel themselves forward.
This makes them great for providing support while walking around the home or town.
However despite its lightweight design rollators are one of the most limited mobility devices. This is because they require reasonable upper body strength to operate effectively, isolating many potential users.
Option 2 – Scooters
Next up we have Mobility Scooters.
Scooters are a great choice for those wanting to maintain an independent lifestyle despite their mobility difficulties.
Scooters are offer a reliable to get around and about without the need for self-propelled or attendant propelled alternatives.
This is aided by the vast number of options available to suit all needs and requirements. From robust class 3 scooters which can be taken on the road, to small and nippy 4mph folding boot scooters.
Of course with scooters the main barrier to entry is the price, something that we will cover in more detail later.
Option 3 – Wheelchairs
Finally, we have the wheelchair.
Arguably the most popular and recognisable form of disability equipment, wheelchairs have been the benefit of hundreds of years’ worth of development and refinement.
As a result wheelchairs over the most flexibility and versatility of all three options, with thousands of options available for both indoor or outdoor use.
This also includes a wide range of propulsion options, from self-propelled to attendant propelled to best suit your needs.
In addition you also have the option of electric power chairs, which offer an even more independent variant of the wheelchair – ideal for those with limited strength.
So, it’s time to address the elephant in the room for most of you.
How much is this equipment going to cost?
To start Mobility scooters are on average the priciest choice of mobility equipment on the market, with many of the newer models going in excess of £900 and above.
Yet many suppliers are partnered with the Motablity scheme, which allows customers to purchase scooters on a lease basis via monthly payments.
Rollators are one of the cheaper alternatives to your mobility needs, with many high-quality units available for under £100. However, this low price reflects the equipment’s limited usability compared to the other big 3 options.
Wheelchairs are available at a wide range of price points due to their versatile nature, making them a great choice for newcomers. A folding travel chair for example could set you back around £80 – £200 depending on the brand and weight capacity.
On the other side you have the electric power chair market, with many of these chairs costing in excess of £700. Yet much like the scooters many of these models are available via the Motability scheme.