Scooters

For many older persons, walking long distances can be very strenuous. Many activities like going shopping or taking a walk with a friend can become painful. Scooters are ideal for persons who may have limits in mobility that prevent them from being able to walk for an extended period of time. For example, by using a scooter, a person who cannot take a walk around a park may be able to enjoy the park’s scenery and events. Ideal for those who don’t need or want to use a wheelchair, scooters have proven to be very valuable devices for many persons.

Power

To power a scooter, all the user needs to do is make sure that it’s battery is charged. Scooters can work with either lead acid batteries or gel cell batteries. Batteries should be charged regularly. If a scooter is used everyday, it is wise to charge the battery at night so that it has full power the next day. For scooters that are used only periodically, batteries can be charged less often. Scooter users should be aware, however, that the battery should not go uncharged for long periods of time. This will help the user to avoid losing power to the scooter while it is in use. A battery charger is often included with a scooter when it is purchased.

Scooters are usually available in front-wheel drive or rear-wheel drive models. The one that is best for you depends on your preferences and needs. If you prefer a smaller scooter for mainly indoor use, a front-wheel drive model may be right for you. These scooters are usually a little less powerful than rear-weel drive models, but are easier to maneuver in more confined areas. Persons who wish to use a scooter outdoors may opt for a rear-wheel drive scooter. These scooters are generally larger than the front-wheel drive models, and they have a larger engine. Most outdoor scooters have four wheels. Indoor scooters, especially those with rear-wheel drive, have only three wheels, making it easier to get around in smaller space.

Control

Like bicycles, scooters are usually steered by handlebars that control the front wheel or wheels. Typically, squeezing levers on these handlebars will activate the scooter’s motor. Because the rider must have control over a scooter, good upper body mobility is necessary. Depending on the scooter, the speed can e set at a high or low setting, or anywhere in between. Again, the scooter that is right for you depends on your individual needs.

Like most other vehicles, scooters come equipped with brakes. Manual brakes work like a car’s brakes, and they lock the wheels of a scooter so that it doesn’t roll. Electromagnetic brakes are activated when the user removes his or her hand from the control on the handlebar. These are useful to stop the scooter on a slope, especially if the user does not have enough strength to keep a manual brake engaged.

Seating

Riding on a scooter should be comfortable. Since the driver is constantly seated while using the scooter, the seat should be comfortable. Many scooters come with standard seats that are cushioned and have arm rests. Others need to have seats added. This kind of scooter is especially good for persons who need a specific kind of support in their seat. The user, along with a therapist, can decide if an orthopedic chair, a high-back chair, or another type of seat would be best.

If it is hard for you to walk long distances without getting tired or feeling pain, a scooter may be able to help. Scooters come in a wide variety of sizes and styles so that whatever your personal needs may be, it is likely there is a scooter available that is just right for you. They can be powered and controlled easily, and provide a comfortable ride. A scooter can be a valuable aid to anyone with limited mobility or to anyone who finds walking long distances to be too strenuous.

Further Information

It is likely that there is an authorized scooter dealer near you. The following scooter manufacturers can help you find the nearest dealer:

Amigo Mobility International
6693 Dixie Highway
Bridgeport, Michigan 48722
1-800-MYAMIGO
FAX: 517-777-8184
http://www.MYAMIGO.com

Electric Mobility Corp.
#1 Mobility Plaza
Sewell, NJ 08080
(800) 662-4548

Hoveround Corporation
2151 Whitfield Industrial Way
Sarasota, FL 34243
(800) 771-6565

Lark of America
W220 N507 Springdale Road
PO Box 1647
Waukesha, WI 53187
(800) 446-4522

Med-Lift & Mobility, Inc.
P.O. Box 1249
310 South Madison
Calhoun City, MS 38916
(800) 748-9438

Pride Health Care, Inc.
182 Susquehanna Avenue
Exeter, PA 18643
(800) 800-8586

Ranger All Season Corporation
P.O. Box 132
George, IA 51237
(800) 225-3811

Shoprider USA, Inc.
23414 68th Avenue South
Kent, WA 98132
(206) 852-7660