Looking for the best way to get around?
Wheelchairs and mobility scooters are excellent ways to increase your mobility so that you can comfortably do your day-to-day activities without additional assistance from a caregiver.
This could mean visiting the corner store, picking up your niece, or just getting around from place to place.
Whether you’re an older aged adult with aching joints, a recently injured but otherwise healthy adult, or someone who has lived with a disability their entire lives, mobility scooters and electric wheelchairs are the two most popular purchases.
But how do you decide which one is right for you?
Differences between a wheelchair and scooter
The main difference between an electric wheelchair and mobility scooter is the shape and how you control it. Mobility scooters are sat on and controlled with handlebars (almost like a scooter motorbike). On the other hand, wheelchairs are sat down on like a manual wheelchair, except you control the direction of movement with a joystick.
Additionally, wheelchairs are 2 wheeled, while mobility scooters have 4 wheels. However, both are very stable, easy to use, and safe.
Who should use an electric wheelchair?
If you have minimal mobility, electric wheelchairs are the better option for you. Generally, these are more comfortable and can be customised for your needs. This means, you can enjoy a more comfortable experience that allows for long-term usage without discomfort.
Electric wheelchairs are also very easy to use to move around. Mobility scooters on the other hand, are more difficult to use continuously.
However, if you’re looking to travel outdoors frequently, electric wheelchairs are not the best option. Wheelchairs work best when indoors.
Who should use a mobility scooter?
If you are still rather mobile, have more physical strength, and want to do more travelling outdoors, mobility scooters are the best option for you.
Mobility scooters have various drivetrain options that are specialised for the type of surface you frequently travel on. Whether this is concrete, grass, or indoor surfaces, you can have a mobility scooter that is designed to work properly on these surfaces.
Additionally, they are easy to use on trains, buses, and even planes. For example, trains allow train guards to place ramps for you to drive onto the train, planes allow you to check in your mobility scooter, and some taxis even have special accessibility options.
What other options are there?
If neither electric wheelchairs or mobility scooters seem right for you, there are a variety of other mobility aids you can use.
For example, manual wheelchairs are more convenient and affordable options. If you only need to use the wheelchair occasionally, manual wheelchairs are an acceptable option. And if you just need a little extra support, walkers could be sufficient for you.