Getting started with a rollator can be daunting at first, but it's just like riding a bike—once you get the hang of it, there's no stopping you!
- To start, roll the walker slightly ahead of you, leaving enough room for you to take a step.
- Make sure you and the rollator are facing the same way, and that your feet are centered behind the walker as you step forward.
- Continue rolling the rollator slowly, and take small steps that keep you close enough to the rollator to feel supported.
- To turn, stay between the legs of the rollator and take small, gradual steps in the direction you’re trying to go. Again, make sure you and your rollator are facing the same way the entire time.
Sitting Down on a Chair or Bed
- Back up against a chair or your bed until you are directly in front of it and can feel it against the back of your legs.
- Push the walker in front of you slightly to give you space to bend forward as you sit.
- Engage the breaks on your rollator.
- Reach behind you and place both hands on the chair’s armrests, or on the bed if you can reach it, to stabilize yourself.
- Slowly lower yourself, using your legs as much as possible.
- Ease down into the chair or your bed. If you find yourself “plopping” down, try leaning forward a bit more as you ease yourself down to give yourself some more control as you land.
Sitting Down on the Rollator Seat
- Engage your breaks.
- If there is one nearby, push your walker up against a wall or another sturdy surface for extra stability.
- Reach behind you, firmly grip the rollator’s handles for balance, and follow the instructions above for sitting down on a chair or bed.
- Keep your arms inside the handles so they don’t catch onto anything as you sit.
- Make sure the breaks are engaged.
- Scoot forward so that you are positioned close to the edge of your bed, a chair, or the rollator seat, with your feet as close to the floor as possible while still being comfortable.
- Using your arms, push up from the bed or the chair’s armrest and gradually shift your bodyweight forward, placing more and more weight on your feet and legs until you are in a standing position. Unless you have an injury or wound to be mindful of, let your legs do most of the work and push with your arms only as much as necessary to start your momentum and keep you balanced.
- Once you are upright, align yourself so that you are facing the same direction as your rollator, and test your balance.
- Disengage the breaks, and move forward while making sure to keep your legs in the space between the rollator’s legs.
Rollator Safety Tips
- Keep all four wheels on the ground at all times.
- Stay within the rollator’s legs, and face in the same direction as the rollator.
- Wait to start sitting until you have turned entirely away from a chair, your bed, or your rollator seat.
- Make sure breaks are engaged in instances where you’re relying on the rollator to stay still (e.g. while sitting or standing in once place).
- Don’t take uneven steps or let the rollator get too far from you as you’re walking. You should be able to walk comfortably while feeling supported.
- When you’re in the kitchen, hold onto the countertop for support rather than your rollator, but keep the rollator nearby.
- If you’re planning to sit on your rollator and have someone push you, make sure that your exact model allows for it. Not all rollators are built for this functionality.
- Watch out for objects that might get snagged onto your rollator’s wheels.
- Don’t put all of your weight on your rollator. The handlebars aren’t made to withstand all of your weight at once, and your rollator can tip over or roll out from under you.