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Cared of getting a scooter

My mobility is very bad as a result of my “emuggerance” ((c) Sir Terry Pratchett) and is getting worse and worse.

In the past 3 years, I have gone FROM

Using a single stick (95% of the time)

TO

Sometimes using a single crutch instead of the stick

TO

Always using the single crutch

TO

Sometimes needing a pair of crutches

TO

ALWAYS needing the pair of crutches

TO

Sometimes needing a wheelchair (if I am having to go more than 100m because I am so slow and need frequent stops if I try to walk that distance.)

I have been fighting the possibility of using a mobility scooter but, as the current position is that, if I want to go somewhere a bit further than the (very nice) coffee shop down my road I can’t do it independently of my husband we have been talking very seriously about my getting a mobility scooter.

THE TROUBLE IS, I AM TERRIFIED OF USING ONE

I stopped driving a few years back after an incident where I “forgot” how to drive and I have not applied to renew my licence. I am terrified that I will be dangerous to other people (and myself) if I use a scooter.

I know that they stop the moment that you release your grip but I am terrified about steering and reversing.

How long did other people take to master their scooters? Did anyone not manage it at all?

I really don’t want to spend a lot of money on a shiny scooter that just ends up as a very expensive coat rack in the hall because I am unable to master it.

That title should have read SCARED not cared of course. I blame my laptop not my rubbish typing and brain

Hi Boblatina,

I’m sorry I can’t offer any advice, but I just wanted to say I TOTALLY understand how you feel.

I read posts on here suggesting to people who don’t habitually use one that they hire a scooter on holiday etc, and I think: “OMG, for me that would be out of the question - especially in a foreign country.” I’d be having palpitations just thinking about it.

I’ve never driven, or even ridden a pushbike. I’m scared of the dodgems at the fair. The thought of hiring a scooter and just driving off on it - e.g. at the mall - with no training, no test, no nothing - gives me butterflies and brings me out in a sweat.

I think I’d kill or injure myself with it, or some other hapless soul! I have very poor spatial awareness (whether that is part of MS or some other problem, I don’t know, as I’ve pretty much always been like it). I’m also not very good at judging speed and distances - e.g. whether I have enough time to cross the road. Sometimes I will literally stand there until it’s clear in both directions, which, as you can imagine, can take some time on a busy road! I really don’t think I should be in charge of anything motorised. If I was “a natural”, I wouldn’t have spent all these years avoiding learning to drive!

I’m not in the position yet where I need to think about scooters, but I suspect life will eventually become very limiting, if I won’t ever contemplate it - especially as I don’t drive either, and don’t have a car or a driver at home.

I hope some folks come forward who have been phobic about it, but managed to conquer their fears.

Tina

x

Have you a ‘Shop Mobility’ centre near you . They will give you guidance before letting you loose on one of their scooters. Gives you a good idea of what scooter you would need. And the confidence to drive one. Practice doing tight circles/turning etc. And yes they do stop as soon as you let go of the controller.

l have used scooters for about 25yrs. And l do have a all-terrain Tramper. And you would be amazed at where l get to on that!!

Like you - l now find l cannot walk unaided. l use a rollator for around the house - and for putting in the car to go places. lt is a Topro Olympus - designed for going over rough ground. lt has a seat and a carrier for all you need to keep with you. l use it to get around the library and supermarket. Even for taking the round laundry basket out to the line and hanging out the washing. l have a stair-lift to get me upstairs and another rollator at the top to get me safely to my bedroom. l can put my dinner plate/mug etc on the seat to get to the table. lt has opened up a ‘bigger world’ for me - l can now do things l had previously had to stop as l just was not safe to get about with sticks. The seat also has a backrest for safety - and the height of the seat is just right for me to get up and down from. So when l take it with me l always use the seat. So many of my friends have very low squashy sofas - and l cannot get out of them if l sit down.

Have you a ‘Shop Mobility’ centre near you . They will give you guidance before letting you loose on one of their scooters. Gives you a good idea of what scooter you would need. And the confidence to drive one. Practice doing tight circles/turning etc. And yes they do stop as soon as you let go of the controller.

l have used scooters for about 25yrs. And l do have a all-terrain Tramper. And you would be amazed at where l get to on that!!

Like you - l now find l cannot walk unaided. l use a rollator for around the house - and for putting in the car to go places. lt is a Topro Olympus - designed for going over rough ground. lt has a seat and a carrier for all you need to keep with you. l use it to get around the library and supermarket. Even for taking the round laundry basket out to the line and hanging out the washing. l have a stair-lift to get me upstairs and another rollator at the top to get me safely to my bedroom. l can put my dinner plate/mug etc on the seat to get to the table. lt has opened up a ‘bigger world’ for me - l can now do things l had previously had to stop as l just was not safe to get about with sticks. The seat also has a backrest for safety - and the height of the seat is just right for me to get up and down from. So when l take it with me l always use the seat. So many of my friends have very low squashy sofas - and l cannot get out of them if l sit down.

i’m terrified of using the ones in tesco because the other shoppers seem to have a death wish!

they stop suddenly in front of me and i stop and need to do some deep breathing before i continue.

people tut at me for having a panic attack due to the death wish people.

all in all, it’s very stressful. the shop assistants are brilliant though and will walk to my car to put my shopping in.

also, have you noticed how people walk through the disabled parking zone without looking for cars?

i’m reversing and suddenly see someone walk right behind my car.

argh! these lemmings wind me up!

carole x

another pet hate is when a mother with a pram crosses the road by putting the pram in the road first.

maybe pedestrians should have to take a test and get a license!

1 Like

i would hire one for a few days,and just go round a local park to get the hang of it, you can go really slow,too i go at walking pace ,you will soon wonder why you were in so much of a panic,and you done have to be on your own ,you can always be with family until you get your confidence at least.trust me once you have tried one you will love the freedom it gives you,i still feel a bit of a pratt on mine but trying to let it now bother me, after all i am getting old now,lol so image doesnt matter to me,anymore.

When I first got a mobility scooter (6 or 7 years ago now) I was very nervous about using it and used to plan each journey endlessly in my head. I had to really force myself to go out in those early days but I made a decision to go out every day, weather permitting. I eventually became more confident and began to enjoy it.

it was the same when I started using a powerchair. A couple of weeks ago I got on the bus in my chair and one of the other passengers watched me reversing into the disabled space she said “you’re good at that now, I remember when you first started getting on the bus, you were rubbish!” She’s right! I was pretty hopeless but it’s second nature now. I have a quick look on google maps if I’m going somewhere new, just to get the dropped kurbs mapped in my head but I don’t worry anymore, I really do work on - have wheels will travel

Jane

Hi

I found it difficult to use a scooter at first but for different reasons to you, it was just one more thing the ‘embuggerance’ (good word, thanks TP) had thrown at me. However it is one of the best things I ever did. I can now get to far more places and go where I want to go when I get there.

I would try one out before you buy. It’s a good idea to try out the shop mobility ones to see what is involves. I would also try one out at a large shopping centre when it is QUIET first. Shopping centre because on the whole the surfaces are level and flat and when it’s quiet because you want to get the hang of the scooter first before you have to negotiate other pedestrians, who aren’t always scooter aware and some have a positive death wish!

I really hope that you are able to use a scooter, it will make your life so much better.

Anne