Getting back to walking

I want to get back to walking again without my rollator but, I’m scared I’ll fall every time I try to as it can take me a long time to get back up again. Can anyone advise me on the best way to do this?

Thank you in advance for any replies,

Hi Jacqueline
Dumb question but what was it that caused you to stop walking? Is it still a factor?

Hi Graeme,

Fear of falling was the reason I stopped walking as much as I used to. I still walk but nearly always use my rollator, I only walk very short distances without it as long as there’s something to like a kitchen worktop, or a chair I can grab if needed. I used to use a walking stick but the physio I saw on a regular basis gave a rollator to try as it would give more stability.

Now when I think about trying, if I know I’ll have to turn around and there won’t be anything to steady me when I turn direction I won’t even attempt it.


interesting conundrum, my rollator folds in a way, and is light enough that I can drag it behind me reasonably comfortably. If I need support or balance assistance it is very quick to open up.
I am not sure there is an ideal solution but its the closest I can get to a suggestion.
Good luck

I have this problem too. The advantage of the rollator should be that you can walk for longer. I presume you are using it outside so using it regularly and going further over time should rebuild your strength confidence and endurance. It is unfortunate but any fall will knock you back on these. I found that the standard indoor rollator system do not work well outside and I needed one that was tall enough for me. You need to address your posture and avoid putting too much pressure on the handles.
At the same time as this you need to do specific drills to improve your balance. A good specialist Neuro Physio should help but they are very thin on the ground. Over the last year I have learned to love my off road rollator but I do think my balance has deteriorated. Physios dislike the over reliance on a single stick as it disrupts the gait. I used a single light weight trekking pole for some time mainly as a point of reference rather than a support.
I try to mix up methods to keep the brain working in different ways, but the rollator is always the safe option when I don’t know what to expect.


I rarely go outside as I’m never sure how I’d get back inside or worse I’d be stuck where I managed to walk to. I only ever go outside if I am going on a car journey or to an appointment (dentist, doctor and such-like) and then someone would always be with me. The rollator I use has been adjusted to suit my height and to make sure my posture isn’t always bent in the wrong position, my physio made sure I knew why when she did it. She also gave me some exercises to do daily or at last two or three times a week, which I try to do but sometimes I struggle to carry out them all out which has in turn meant my mobility isn’t as good as it should be.

Hence me wanting to find a way to get back to walking without my rollator.

My rollator folds too (almost like a deck chair) but it is not light enough for me to drag it behind me, in fact there’s no way I could walk without it to support me.

Thanks for the luck, I’ll need it.

Hi Jacqueline
My situation is not dissimilar to your own, except that I’ve not graduated to a Rollator yet - still using a single stick, lots of furniture, chairs & stools in strategic places, plus an electric chair for “long haul” (hospitals, airports, B&Q etc.). I use a shopping trolley as a rollator when I nip out to pick up stuff but the whole weekly shop is now beyond me - in one hit anyway.

I’m still recovering from a bout of cellulitis which for a change, hit my good leg. Getting more mobile now but I’m conscious that I’m stiffer and weaker than before the infection (over a month now). More than anything, I see my priority to build up leg strength and hip / thigh / lower back flexibility and reduce stiffness.

Just doing more walking is not really the answer - you’ll need some strength and conditioning work to prepare your body for the increased activity levels.

I plan to make use of my yoga mat, foam roller and exercise bike to restore some life into my lower half and hope that improved walking will be one of the benefits. You might want to consider a similar regime?

My only other suggestion is to make your legs and body as strong and flexible as you can, either via physio and exercise machines.
All the best

if you check Amazon or ebay you can get a foot cycle. it works by you sitting on a chair and cycling this in time will help to strenghen your legs, but in the beginning its quite hard going and you might tirer easily. start off with about 2 to 3 mins a day and as your legs get stronger cycle for longer. i also suffer with MS and Arthritis so i know some days are bed days. but give it a try… good luck let me know how you get on

I’ll have a look at those sites, thank you for the suggestion.

Hi Jacq, what type of MS do you have? With me it is PPMS and I first used a stick, then a rollator, then a scooter, followed by wheelchair.

Some people with RRMS do get breaks where they can regain mobility. But as MS is usually progressive, I think it would be quite hard to go back to the mobility anyone had. A physiotherapist would be the one to help you.


Hi Bouds,

I was told in 1999 I have RRMS and have never been told any different. I am maybe clutching at straws but, I just want to get at a bit better at walking without relying on an aid.

Thank you for what you said re. my query.


Those of us with RRMS do have more reason to hope until we get demoted to Secondary Progressive. Personally I do not like the warrior term. Having “recovered” from my first official diagnosed relapse I have reason to believe exercise and Neuro plasticity do work to an extent. However I liken living with MS to a game of snakes and ladders but someone has stolen the ladders. We live on a slippery slope and inactivity is our enemy. Everyone with a long term illness is in the same boat. If we do not fall over (too often) we are fine! Activity and exercise are not given the prominence they should be.


I was diagnosed with RRMS in 1991 and for a while was bed bound BUT was lucky enough to regain enough strength and control to get back walking working driving and travelling. So despite my current SPMS condition I would say work at being the best you can. No one knows what is round the corner. Good luck

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Now, I know after reading what you’d written that maybe I will get back some of what I’ve lost with some work and hope isn’t lost.

Thank you.

I don’t remember having my first relapse, I was given an appointment to see a neurologist in the 1980’s, who told me she was 80% sure I had MS which gave me hope that there’s an 20% chance I don’t, and something else was causing these strange things happening to me. Now I know whatever it is I have to work to get better.