A knee scooter is a walking and mobility aid, also known as an all-terrain kneerover, and is one of the most popular pieces of medical equipment out there. These scooters are in high demand and people rent thousands of them day after day across the country. It’s no wonder; they work well.
There are many models currently in the market, so selecting the best knee scooter to meet your mobility needs might be overwhelming. Stick around, we’re about to tell you what to look for when buying a knee scooter!
You’ll find some answers here today, whether you’re looking for the right walking aid for you or a loved one or for yourself. We’ll do our best to answer the most common questions and concerns about knee scooters. For example, do you know what this knee platform is about?
What Exactly Is a Steerable Knee Scooter?
There are different kinds of knee scooters, but all are medical versions of the scooters you loved in your childhood. Most standard ones feature four wheels, although some have three. These lightweight alternatives to crutches feature an adjustable handlebar and handbrakes. They’re either made of aluminum or galvanized steel.
You can find anything from basic to high-tech designs. Knee scooters continue to evolve and the comfort, safety, and maneuverability are much improved. Another great feature is that you can fold them for easy storage and transport.
Benefits of Using a Knee Scooter Instead of Crutches
Using a knee scooter is quite simple but can be dangerous if you try to do tricks with it in a skate park. This device is supposed to help you heal and the last thing you want to do is hurt yourself… again…
Be sure to place your weight on your healthy shin before you place the injured, bent leg on the center pad of the scooter. It must be at a 90-degree angle. Then, propel forward with your healthy leg firmly on the ground.
Take it slow at first; mastering a scooter takes practice and focus, so be alert at all times. Remember, don’t drink (or text) and scoot!
Are You a Good Candidate for a Knee Scooter?
People with balance problems, like those with inner ear disorders, or under certain medications can sometimes use a knee scooter. This is because some of these vehicles can do the balancing for them.
Injured older people are great candidates for a knee scooter. This is because many of them can no longer move as they used to. Knee scooters provide an incredible amount of stability in comparison to the strength and balance required to use a cane.
Similarly, people with little upper body strength have a hard time using crutches. This is because such devices require grip strength and forearm muscles as well as engagement of the core and shoulder muscles. You don’t need any of that for a knee scooter. In fact, it takes little strength to use it.
Are you a busy bee? A knee scooter is perfect for you because it can support your entire weight. It also allows you to keep your hands rested for as long as you need.
Are Knee Scooters Appropriate for Seniors?
As we said above, seniors love knee scooters because it helps them maintain independence. Activity matters, as people want to experience things they’ve always done or wanted to do. Be it a new sport, a game, a trip, or even a new love…
Are you a senior? Well, you might want to consider a knee scooter. It could be a huge plus for you! The devices, which started as ambulatory walking aids over 30 years ago, are the best alternative to crutches. We already mentioned that you don’t need great upper body strength to operate them. What a great way to recover your independence!
As you probably already know, certain mobility aids don’t consider active lives. However, a knee scooter does give you the freedom to continue to do what you love, despite the mobility limitation. Indeed, you can speed up your recovery by choosing the right method, and this contraption might just help you with it.
Question: Do you struggle with balance? Poor balance leads to falls and could slow down recovery time and lead to problems later. This kind of knee scooter helps you maintain balance, to a certain degree, so you can remain active. Weigh your options and consider a wheelchair if you lack the strength and coordination for a scooter.
Note that you must have a certain level of fitness to use the walker. Most models can accommodate up to 300 – 400 pounds. Thus, this medical aid is safe for you if you’re within that range. Anyone over 400 pounds should consult their doctor to discuss other recovery options.
Add-Ons for Seniors
Many models are lightweight and easy for seniors to maneuver. Speaking of steering, knee scooters are easy to drive in and out of the house. Don’t worry about stopping; most models feature hand brakes.
We already mentioned that most walkers have 3-4 wheels, but a few feature a fifth one. It definitely adds stability.
Not All Seniors Will Benefit From a Knee Walker
A lack of fitness and strength is a limiting factor when it comes to maneuvering a knee scooter. Still, some models are heavier than others. So find a lighter one and see how you feel.
We discussed that you must have a certain degree of stability to be able to maneuver a knee walker. Being able to balance is important! A rollator or alternative method might be a better choice for you if you have balance issues.
Furthermore, people who use knee scooters might want to travel. Many models are foldable and easy to transport and you can easily get them in and out of a vehicle. You can find the perfect one for you, but just be aware that this can be an issue.
Do you have to climb stairs? You can lift a knee walker over them but not actually climb with most of them. There’s one designed for that purpose though; check it out!
As for the knee pad, it allows you to be comfortable while using the walker for extended periods of time. It helps you maintain good posture. Standing up straight is important so as not to add stress to already ailing joints.
When Not To Use a Knee Scooter
A steerable knee scooter is great for the most part, but there are limits. There’ll be all kinds of obstacles on your path and terrains you can’t cover. Avoid dangerous situations like going up or down speed bumps, driveway ramps, and steep roads.
Furthermore, a rocky, sandy, or grassy path is a no-no. Some special scooters can cover it but rough terrain can ruin a regular knee scooter and even lead to further injury.
There are different knee scooters to aid with mobility after experiencing lower leg injuries. Especially those in which you must keep weight off the leg while recovering. Foot surgery and knee injury are the most common. You can also use it for an injured, sprained, or broken ankle and an Achilles tendon rupture, among others.
A mobility scooter is a great way to get around while recovering from a lower leg injury. However, don’t use it if you have a cast above your knee and can’t bend it to 90 degrees.
Similarly, skip it if you can’t balance properly, if both of your legs are injured, or if you don’t have enough upper body strength to maneuver the handlebar and propel the knee walker forward.
Benefits of Using a Knee Scooter Instead of Crutches
Eliminates the Underarm Pain
Anyone who’s ever had to use crutches will agree that they suck. This is because you must support your body weight on your forearms and underarms. Your legs must support your body, not your arms. Using crutches for long periods can injure the nerves and lead to other health problems.
Using a knee scooter requires that you place your weight on your good shin. This is a very strong bone that can easily hold most of the body weight, unlike the upper limbs.
Knee scooters are closer to the floor and, thus, more stable than crutches. They also have a comfortable, cushioned, adjustable knee pad. It has enough space to rest your injured leg and keeps you from having to put your body weight on it.
As you can imagine, a knee walker allows for better mobility to get around. It’s a lot more efficient than crutches. The stability this walker provides decreases your risk of falling and injuring yourself further.
How to Select the Best Knee Scooter for You
There are many options out there so it can be overwhelming. The best places to look for a knee scooter are local medical supply stores. You can also buy or rent them through online medical suppliers. Some insurance companies cover this kind of walking aid. Call your provider for more details.
Renting a Knee Scooter
This vehicle is a good option to consider if you’ll only need it for a short time. Medical suppliers often offer discounts, so be sure to ask! For instance, CSA Medical Supply rents knee scooters for $100 a month. They also offer free shipping. Depending on the model, a new scooter may cost you about $300.
Contact your local medical supplier and ask if they rent knee scooters. Your doctor can also refer you to one that rents them.
Insurance coverage is different from provider to provider- especially when buying a steerable knee scooter, as they only cover those with an HCPCS code.
HCPCS is a collection of standardized codes that represent medical services, supplies, and procedures. They make the processing of health insurance claims by Medicare and other insurers easier.
Providers either cover the purchase or rental of a walking aid after surgery or lower leg injury. You’ll need a signed prescription from your doctor along with your medical records.
You might want to contact your provider and ask if your insurance plan covers mobility aids. Don’t forget to ask about the copay. You can also go to an in-network provider to which your insurance provider will refer you if you’re in a managed care network, also if you have an HMO policy that can bill them directly.
Choosing the Right Knee Scooter for You
Selecting the best knee scooter for you or your loved ones is a tough decision because there are many different models. How do you recognize the best one? Don’t panic, just keep the following in mind:
Find out more about the weight and height capacity of these vehicles and compare them to yours. The adjustable handlebars should adjust to your height and the scooter should support your weight.
You also want a steerable knee walker with a good turning radius.
Why is this important? Well, most people use these walking aids inside buildings, be it at home or the office. These places are full of obstacles you’ll have to overcome and the scooter you select should be up for the task.
Do you also need to use it outside? You need an all-terrain knee scooter, then. The one you end up with will depend on your lifestyle as well as the area where you live. Keep in mind that most of these vehicles are designed for indoor use.
Types of Knee Walkers
All knee walkers have wheels, a padded seat to rest your knee, and steering handlebars. There are many three-four wheeled models on the market. Some come with a few extras like brakes, a knee caddy, a basket, all-terrain wheels, heavy capacity, and other things.
The handlebar brakes in these are like those of a bicycle. The three-wheeled versions are a bit smaller and you can go through tighter spaces with them.
The baskets are also like those on bicycles and big enough for groceries and anything else you might need to carry.
The all-terrain wheels are larger and wider, about 12″. This allows the user to go over grass, sand, dirt, and even gravel. This type of scooter is great if you’re 5′ to 5′ 6″ tall.- especially if you spend a lot of time outside. Furthermore, the heavyweight capacity feature is for bigger people or for those who’ll be carrying more than 400 pounds. The all-terrain knee scooter, which also features rear breaks, is quite special, indeed.
What’s the Best Knee Scooter on the Market for an Adult?
There are all kinds of knee walkers on the market, all for strict use by adults. Here are our three top favorites currently out there:
Drive Medical 796 Dual Pad Steerable Knee Walker With Basket
This is a stylish, modern knee scooter. It features a durable steel alloy frame and dual-padded comfortable seats. It comes with a spacious, removable basket as well. It’s on Amazon’s Choice list of standard scooters by Drive Medical Brand. It’s available in silver and built with a steel alloy. It weighs 22 pounds and measures 30 x 16 x 31 inches.
Designed for optimal maneuverability, you can easily steer this drive knee scooter. The 8-inch casters make it ideal for indoor and outdoor usage. The vehicle features deluxe braking as an extra safety measure. It’s ideal for you if you’re recovering from foot surgery, breaks, sprains, amputation, and foot ulcers.
KneeRover Eeconomy Knee Scooter. A Steerable Knee Walker Crutch Alternative With a Dual Braking System in Matte Black
This is an excellent crutch alternative as it’s way more comfortable, not to mention affordable. It’s designed for outdoor and indoor use and can support either leg.
The vehicle is easy to maneuver and has excellent stability and control. It features four smooth 7.5″ rubber wheels and dual rear on-wheel brakes. The locking handbrake is adjustable for better control. You’ll want to speed up but we don’t recommend it!
Furthermore, this steerable knee walker is lightweight and adjustable. It weighs 21 pounds and has a 300-pound weight capacity. The adjustable handlebars and kneepad are perfect for a 4′ 9″ to a 6′ 4″ person. It’s perfect for children and adults. Finally, the handlebars have a quick release folding mechanism for easy transport and storage.
ELENKER Steerable Knee Walker Deluxe
This medical scooter is a perfect alternative to crutches.
The 23.23-pound vehicle is available in black and ideal for individuals recovering from injury, surgery, or below-the-knee amputees. You don’t have to worry about mobility with this scooter. It’s perfect to get you around and wherever you need to go.
The materials are lightweight and durable. It’s lightweight yet sturdy and has a robust weight capacity. It’ll make you feel safe and stable as well as comfortable wherever you are.
The walker also features handlebars with a quick-release folding mechanism. This is for easy transport and storage. The scooter features four 8″ PVC wheels with dual adjustable locking handbrakes and dual rear on-wheel brakes.
Now, you’re almost an expert on knee scooters! May you select the best one for you and your needs!