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8 Types of Walkers For Seniors

8 Types of Walkers For Seniors

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There are many types of walkers and rollators to choose from. Each one has it’s unique features and benefits and are better suited to support various needs, so it is worth getting an overview of each before moving onto looking at specific models in our Top Picks section later on in this guide. 

There are two broad categories: conventional walking frames and two-wheeler models. As for rollators, they may have anywhere from two to four wheels.

Types of Walkers & Rollators

Let’s begin by clarifying the difference between the two main types of walkers since there seems to be a bit of confusion about them – Walkers and Rollators.

The terms walker and rollator are sometimes used interchangeably to refer to the same thing, but there is a key distinction to make between the two.

The principal difference between a walker and a rollator is a walker consists of a frame with legs and handles only, so you need to lift it as you move forward. In contrast, a rollator has wheels (anywhere from two to four) and is easily pushed along as you move. 

Rollators often have seats for you to rest in if needed and braking systems (as discussed earlier in this guide) to help you bring your walking aid to a halt. 

Walkers are typically best for moving within your home, where it isn’t practical to use a rollator every time you want to go to a different room. Still, many seniors can also use their walkers outside and don’t need the additional assistance a rollator provides. 

As rollators are more advanced than walkers and have several additional features, they are more expensive than their less sophisticated counterparts. However, many users find them to be well worth the extra cost. 

Standard Walking Frames

types of walkers - Standard Walking Frame for Seniors
A Standard Walking Frame

Standard walking frames are the simplest types of walkers, consisting of four legs and two handles which the user holds onto and uses to lift the frame with every step forward. 

While their simple, no-frills design makes them quite affordable, they are challenging to use for many seniors, as they require pretty good coordination and strength. As you have to lift the walker slightly further ahead of you before moving forward, using this type of walker can be very tiring, as you have to repeat the same motion again and again. 

Read: Best Standard Walking Frames

Lightweight Walkers

types of walkers - Lightweight walker for seniors
Lightweight Walker

Lightweight walkers are great for seniors who aren’t strong enough to use some of the more common types of walkers. Their frames are built from lightweight materials, such as aluminum instead of steel, saving several pounds of weight and making them considerably lighter than other more widely used models that weigh around 20lbs.

Most of the other types of walkers on this list can also be lightweight, including some of the rollators.

Read: Best Lightweight Walkers

Front Wheel Walkers

types of walkers - Front Wheel Walker for Seniors
Front Wheel Walker

Front-wheel walkers have the same basic design as standard walking frames, with the addition of wheels on the two front legs. This means you can gently push your walking aid along instead of having to lift it countless times even just to travel a pretty short distance, so they can be a strong contender if you have low endurance and weak arms. 

However, because they have wheels, they can be more difficult to control than other types of walkers, especially if you apply too much load onto the front wheels when moving forward.

They are generally more expensive than standard walking frames but are still a chunk cheaper than most rollators. However, depending on your individual needs and preferences, you may find spending a bit more on a rollator to be a worthwhile investment. 

Read: Front Wheel Walker Reviews

Heavy Duty Walkers

types of walkers - Heavy Duty Walker for seniors
Heavy Duty Walker

Heavy-duty walkers (also known as bariatric walkers) are specially designed and built to support heavier users. To achieve this end, they are made from more robust materials and are often larger than other types of walkers. 

There isn’t a set weight over which you should only use heavy duty models, but as a general rule, if you weigh over 300lbs, you should consider using a heavy duty walker. 

Read: Best Heavy Duty Walker Reviews

Side (Hemi) Walkers

types of walkers - Side (Hemi) Walkers for seniors
Side (Hemi) Walkers

Side walkers (sometimes referred to as hemi walkers) are quite similar in their design to standard walking frames, particularly with regards to simplicity. The key difference between the two is side walkers only have a single handle for you to grip with one of your hands. 

Hemi walkers offer more support and stability than a walking stick, as they have four legs to provide additional support and balance. Still, if you need a more significant amount of assistance with your mobility, then you should consider some of the other types of walkers on our list. 

Read: Best Side and Hemi Walkers

Upright Walkers

types of walkers - Upright walker for seniors
Upright Walker

Upright walkers are wheeled walking aids that allow users to walk while maintaining a better posture safely. 

Instead of gripping handles with your hands, you place your forearms on the elevated armrests, reducing the pressure exerted on many parts of the body, which seniors often experience pain in, such as their knees, back, hands, and wrists. 

Read: Best Upright Walker Reviews

Four Wheel Rollators

types of walkers - Four Wheel Rollators
Four Wheel Rollator

Four wheel rollators offer much better mobility than non-wheeled walkers – and as you don’t need to lift them every time you move a few inches forward, they are great for seniors or patients with very limited endurance and weak upper body strength. 

Such rollators are equipped with brakes to slow you down and have a seat for you to take a rest in if needed. The wheels can be locked to prevent the rollator from rolling away when you come to a standstill, and only the front wheels do the steering on most models (just like in automobiles.)

Four wheel rollators can vary a great deal in price, depending on the materials they are built from and the features they have, which can include a cane holder, a basket, and a phone or bottle holder.

Read: Best 4 Wheel Rollator Reviews

Three Wheel Rollators

types of walkers - Three Wheel Rollators for seniors
Three Wheel Rollators

Three wheel rollators offer many of the benefits of their four-wheeled sisters and typically provide even better mobility due to the wheel arrangement (one at the front, two at the back). However, they don’t have seats and are smaller, so they usually have fewer features. 

Read: Best 3 Wheel Rollator Reviews

Top Picks

Below you can find some of our top picks. Save yourself hours of research and go straight to some of the best, most cost-effective models being sold by trusted sellers on Amazon today.

UPWalker Lite Original Upright Walker (Stand Up Rolling Mobility Walking Aid with Seat)

UPWalker Lite Original Upright Walker

Price    $545

69 Customer Ratings

4.2/5

Brand: UPWalker
Product Description: This four-wheeled walker is a lighter, smaller and less expensive version of the original UPWalker.

It weighs just 15.5lbs and was designed with safety, practicality, and stability in mind. 

This model has a supportive chair and backrest, and comes with a beverage holder and a personal carrying bag.

Quick-Facts – UPWalker Lite

  • UPWalker Lite will arrive fully assembled! It’s ready to use right out of the box.
  • Designed for users between 4’7’’ – 5’10’’ in height, and a maximum weight of 300 pounds
  • Seat measures 18″ X 10.75″
  • The largest width of the UPWalker Lite measures 25-inches wide. It’s designed to fit through the doorways of almost any home.
  • At only 15.5 pounds, it is one of the easiest walkers to lift or transport in its class.
  • If you order soon, UPWalker will include 3 FREE items: A Personal Carrying Bag, Beverage Holder & Backrest Support

Feature Ratings

Armrests

4.2/5

Handbrakes

4/5

Seat

4/5

Foldable Frame

4.2/5

Pros 

Cons

  • Light Weight
  • Very Maneuverable
  • Easy to Transport
  • 30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Available in one size only
  • Price

Pricing And Availability

Check current pricing and availability for the UPWalker Lite

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UPWalker Original Upright Walker (Stand Up Rolling Mobility Walking Aid with Seat)

UPWalker Original Upright Walker

Price    $645

271 Customer Ratings

3.9/5

Brand: UPWalker
Product Description:

This foldable walker has four wheels to provide you with maximum stability and weight-bearing assistance. It has a comfy seat for you to rest in, a bottle holder, and lockable brakes, in addition to a built-in storage bag. 

It comes in a standard and large size to ensure it is a good a fit as possible for you.

Quick-Facts – UPWalker Original Upright Walker

  • Stylish European design has ergonomically appealing features and includes (3) Free Accessories.
  • Designed for everyday use outdoors, in a spacious home, or living facility.
  • Preliminary clinical studies revealed improvement in walking, posture & stability, as well as reduced pain in legs, back, hands, wrists, and joints.
  • Can be helpful in treatment and mobility for patients with cardiovascular, neurological, pulmonary, and other health disorders.

Feature Ratings

Adjustable-Height Armrests

4.5/5

Lockable Handbrakes

4.5/5

Comfortable Seating

4.5/5

Sit-To-Stand Handles

4/5

Sturdy Foldable Frame

4.5/5

Multi-Terrain Wheels

4.5/5

Pros 

Cons

  • Well Built
  • Very Sturdy
  • Multiple Sizes Available
  • 30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Large Size
  • Heavy
  • Price

Pricing And Availability

Check Pricing and Availability for the UPWalker Original Upright Walker

ELENKER Upright Walker (Stand Up Folding Rollator) 

ELENKER Upright Walker (Stand Up Folding Rollator) 

Price    $309.99

505 Customer Ratings

3.9/5

Brand: ELENKER
Product Description:

This upright walker has 8 inch PVC wheels and is an excellent option for those who want to minimize the load exerted on their wrists, hands, and back. 

This model also has ergonomic hand brakes and an array of safety measures and useful features.

It weighs just 22lbs and was designed to give you the freedom to go anywhere you want.

Quick-Facts – ELENKER Upright Walker

  • Back Straight and Remain Active: The height of padded armrest from ground is 37”-43”, soft padded armrests keep your forearms at a natural level, relieve painful stress on shoulders and back.
  • Stability and Security: Solid PVC material 8” wheels, 360°swivel front wheels,sturdy enough, easy maneuvering indoor and outdoor. Ergonomic hand brakes and sturdy frame provide better safety.
  • Foldable and Convenient: Easy assembly, no need any tools, compact size for storage. Detachable polyester storage bag, cane holder to leave your hands free.
  • Comfortable Seat with Backrest: Wide backrest support, breathable mesh seat and locked rear wheels ensure comfort and safety when taking rests.
  • Quality-assured and Nice Service: 100% tested before leaving the factory, FDA approved and 24-hour friendly email customer service.

Feature Ratings

Adjustable Armrests

3.5/5

Handbrakes

4.5/5

Thick Folding Seat

4.5/5

Obstacle Aid Pedal

4.5/5

Zippered Detachable Bag

4/5

Pros 

Cons

  • Light Weight
  • Great Value
  • Easy to Maneuver
  • 30 Day Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Not Recommended For Users Over 6ft
  • Price

Pricing And Availability

Check current pricing and availability for the ELENKER Upright Walker

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Drive Medical RTL10266-T Nitro Euro Style Walker Rollator

This adjustable four-wheel rollator can be conveniently folded and has large wheels for comfort and stability. It has several useful features that improve its functionality in addition to a comfy seat for you to rest in.

Drive Medical RTL10266-T Nitro Euro Style Walker Rollator

Price    $199

799 Customer Ratings

4.5/5

Brand: Drive Medical
Product Description: This popular and affordable four-wheel rollator can be easily folded stored or transported, and has large wheels for comfort and easy rolling stability. 

The RTL 10266-T has several useful features that improve its functionality in addition to a comfortable seat for you to rest in.

Quick-Facts – Drive Medical RTL10266-T

  • Handle height easily adjusts with unique push button; Back support height easily adjusts with tool-free thumb screw
  • Large 10 inches front casters allow optimal steering and rolling comfort; Caster fork design enhances turning radius
  • Easily folds with one hand to ultra-compact size for storage; Cross-brace design allows for side-to-side folding and added stability. Plastic clip holds the Nitro closed when frame is folded
  • Handsome and removable zippered storage bag; Unique bag attachment keeps bag securely in place when rollator is open or folded
  • Seat Dimensions: 18 inch W x 23.5 inch H x 8.5 inch D. Tall height ideal for users 6 feet and above

Pros 

Cons

  • Very Maneuverable
  • Easy to Transport
  • Reasonably Priced
  • Return Policy is Strict
  • On the Heavy Side at 22.2lbs

Pricing And Availability

Check current pricing and availability for the Drive Medical RTL10266-T

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Drive Medical Four Wheel Walker Rollator

This rollator is also from Drive Medical and is considerably cheaper than most other rival models. It has a padded seat, adjustable handles, and deluxe loop-lock brakes, plus a pouch to store small personal belongings in. 

Drive Medical Four Wheel Walker Rollator

Price    $55.06

9737 Customer Ratings

4.5/5

Brand: Drive Medical
Product Description: This rollator is manufactured by Drive Medical and is considerably less expensive than most rival models. It has a padded seat, adjustable handles, and deluxe loop-lock brakes, plus a pouch to store small personal belongings in. 

It has a 4.5-star rating from almost 10,000 satisfied customers on Amazon. 

Quick-Facts – Drive Medical Four Wheel Walker Rollator

  • Four Wheel Rollator provides reliable support with maximum comfort and is ideal for uneven or outdoor terrain
  • Features deluxe loop locks for safety, non marking wheels, and a convenient pouch for personal belongings
  • Built in padded seat with backrest and adjustable handle heights ensure customized comfort
  • Easily store and transport walker by removing or folding backrest into compact size
  • Handle Height: 31 to 37 Inch; Seat Dimensions 12 inch (L) x 12 inch (W); Weight Capacity: 300 lbs

Pros 

Cons

  • Very Maneuverable
  • Easy to Transport
  • Bargain Priced
  • Won't Lock in Folded Position
  • Seat Height is NOT adjustable

Pricing And Availability

Check current pricing and availability for the UPWalker Lite

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I Assembly My Walker By Myself?

Most of the walkers in our Top Picks section can easily be assembled, so you can save a chunk of change as you should have no trouble doing this by yourself and therefore won’t need to pay an assembly fee. 

Furthermore, many of the models don’t require any tools as part of the assembly process. 

Do I Need To Pay For Shipping?

This varies depending on the individual store you are buying from. Still, most sellers on Amazon offer free shipping, and many even offer next-day delivery if you have an Amazon Prime subscription, so you can begin using your walker asap. 

How Can I Clean My Walker?

You can easily clean your walker or rollator with soap and water or wet wipes. The seat, handlebars, and frame are the areas that you should focus your cleaning efforts on.

Can I Pay in Installments?

Many Amazon sellers allow you to pay for large purchases bit by bit. For example, if you purchase a rollator for $179.99, you may be able to pay for it by setting up a monthly direct debit of about $30 for six months. 

Should I Buy a Used Walker?

There are plenty of bargain, second-hand walkers and rollators on Amazon, which can be helpful if you are on a fixed or low budget. However, we recommend buying a new one, as second-hand walkers may have faulty components or may have already used up their warranties. 

With many established Amazon sellers offering finance packages that allow you to pay in installments, everyone can afford a fantastic brand-new walker or rollator to give them their independence back! 

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