We get many questions from patients regarding our knee scooters, and that’s great — this means people are interested in more convenient mobility devices than just a pair of crutches. Below, we wanted to address some of the most common questions that come up about knee scooters/knee walkers themselves.
If you have any questions regarding our rental service or how to buy a knee walker for yourself, we have a specific FAQ for that, too.
Q: What is the difference between knee scooters and knee walkers?
A: Nothing; the terms are completely interchangeable. In fact, we use both terms when we talk to patients about them.
From our experience, it seems that “knee walker” is the older term, and it is the one that stuck among doctors. Because of Dan’s background in orthopedic sales, he was used to hearing doctors refer to the devices as knee walkers, and that is the term he went with. As the devices became more popular, patients came up with a term that is technically more accurate, knee scooters.
Use whichever term you prefer. It’s no different than ordering a soda versus ordering a pop.
Q: How can I find out which of these knee scooters is right for me?
A: If you are renting a scooter, we tried to take the guesswork out of the process by making the best scooter on the market available for rental. This is the Pathfinder model, made by RammTLC just outside of Seattle. Dan himself tried out every knee scooter he could get his hands on, and he found the Pathfinder was the most stable, the most durable, and the most user-friendly.
The one thing about the Pathfinder that makes some people hesitant is that it weighs about 2.5 pounds more than our other two models, both of which are available for purchase. If you will need to transport your knee scooter regularly — say by packing it into your car or carrying it up a flight of stairs — then maybe purchasing one of the lighter models will make your recovery that much easier.
The first of the lighter knee scooters is called the Roscoe, and it comes with adjustable hand brakes, which gives you more control over your speed and stopping.
The second of the lighter scooters is called the DV8. That one features a dual braking system, so you can slow yourself with either hand. Note that the DV8 has a slightly lower weight capacity: It can support 300 pounds to the Roscoe’s or the Pathfinder’s 350 pounds.
Q: Do they turn? Fold up? Work on carpet?
A: Each of our knee scooters turns with a handlebar, just as a bicycle does. Each also folds up — there are simple release levers that make folding easy.
Our knee scooters are fine to use on carpet, though we must point out that transitioning between surfaces requires an extra amount of caution. This is especially true if you have a carpeted surface that is slightly above the level of a hardwood or linoleum surface. Go slowly over those bumps.
Q: How big are your knee scooters?
A: Our Pathfinder model weighs 25 pounds, and its handlebars adjust to heights between 31 inches and 41 inches. The pad that supports the user’s leg has a 2-inch range of height adjustment, as well.
The DV8 knee scooter is lighter, at 22.7 pounds, and its range of pad-height adjustment is 3 inches. That said, its handlebar only extends to just less than 38 inches high, and it supports less weight (300 pounds) than the other two models.
The Roscoe Knee Scooter has similar dimensions to the Pathfinder, though it’s pad has an extra half inch of adjustment room, and the scooter itself weighs almost 2.5 pounds less.
Q: How do I slow down on a knee scooter?
A: Our knee scooters come outfitted with hand braking systems, just like on a bicycle. And just as with a bicycle, you will need to be careful not to pull those brakes too hard, as you risk coming to an abrupt stop and possibly losing balance. To get a feel for the brakes, we tell our customers to get their knee scooters before their surgeries so they can have a day or two to get comfortable with the devices safely.
Q: Do I need a prescription to rent your knee scooters?
A: We do not require a prescription to rent our knee scooters. However, it might still be a good idea to get your doctor to write you a prescription for a knee scooter so that you can submit it to your insurance provider for reimbursement.