Hesperian Health Guides

Walkers

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HealthWiki > Disabled Village Children > Chapter 63: Walking Aids > Walkers


There are many ways to make walkers or walking frames. Here we show a range from very simple to more complex. Choose the design and height depending on the child’s needs and size.

Boy using simple wheeled walker.
Boy using higher wheeled walker with armrests.
Girl using walker with under-armed crutches incorporated.
Julio has strong arms and good body control. He can use a simple low walker. Lico has weak elbows and poor balance or body control. He needs a higher walker with armrests. Anna has weak legs and poor balance. She does best with underarm crutches built into the walker.


The above walkers can be made with 2 cm. x 4 cm. boards (such as those used on roofs to hold tiles), or thin trees or branches. The wood or plywood wheels roll easily when little weight is on them (when child pushes walker) but have a braking action when child puts full weight on them (when taking a step).

Side view and front view of simple walker with wheels.
SIDE VIEW FRONT VIEW
Side view and front view of simple walker with wheels.
Diagonal support adds strength.
Round edges of handle.
nails
wood or plywood wheel
piece of steel construction rod (re-bar)
Triangular construction adds strength.

Finding the design that works best for a particular child often involves experimenting and changing different features.

For example. Carlota has poor body and hip control, and tends to ‘fall through’ the space between her arms when the handgrips are upright.
Girl walking with difficulty with wheeled walker with upright hand-bars.
A higher walker with a bar as the handgrip works better for her.
Girl walking comfortably with walker with flat handbar.
boy holding on to a walker with slanted side rails.
This walker with slanting bars lets a child hold it at the height that he finds works best.


Other walker designs



WALKER MADE FROM CANE, RATTAN, OR BAMBOO WOOD WALKER
Design from Rattan and Bamboo Equipment For Handicapped Children, J. K. Hutt
Rectancular box like bamboo walker.
Design by Don Caston
wood walker with a slanted bar running in between the child's legs.
Joints can be tied with cane, ribbon, nylon string, strips of car inner tube or whatever. Wood walker for a child whose legs need to be held apart.


Note: A walker with no wheels is very stable but harder to move.


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seat
A walker with 2 wheels and 2 posts is fairly stable but easy to move. A walker with 3 or 4 wheels is very easy to move but can easily roll out from under the child (unless the child is seated).


WALKER MADE FROM SOLID IRON ROD (RE-BAR) WITH ARM RESTS — WELDING REQUIRED

top of walker should line up with arms bent at 90 degrees when child is standing straight.
Design from Simple Prosthesis Manufacture, Chris Dartnell.
Measure child.
elbow height
cut and bent rod shaped to make the frame of a walker.
Cut and bend rod.
different components of a fully assembled walker.
Assemble walker.
padding or hand-grips from crutches
slider
rubber
wood wheel
different views of the walker.
SIDE VIEW
FRONT VIEW
ARMREST
Weld curved armrest to rod.
Curved y-shaped object with arrows indicating width and angle, rectangle with arrows  indicating where to put hardware.
width of forearm
angled toward body
leather, cardboard, plastic, or sponge
wheel
washer
nail
weld


SIMPLE WALKER MADE FROM SOLID IRON ROD (RE-BAR)— WELDING REQUIRED

Design from Simple Prosthesis Manufacture, Chris Dartnell. Cut and weld rod. SIDE VIEW FRONT VIEW
top of walker should line up with hands when arms are half bent and child is fully upright.
arms in half-bent position
different views of the walker.

CART WALKER

Design from Handling the Young Cerebral Palsied Child at Home, by Finnic
man helping child walk with a play animal in the front of the walker. walker wiht front compartment and side bars. boy using walker to walk with another boy riding in the front compartment.
The added weight in the cart can help the child stand firmly—and makes learning to walk more fun. As the child progresses, he can change his grip from the front bar to the side bars. Wheels on this cart walker are made from the round seed pods of a tree in Mexico, called Hava de San Ignacio.

ROLLER SEAT AND TRICYCLE WALKERS

child sitting on a half barrel seat holding onto a vertical cylinder. Useful for a child with cerebral palsy who ‘bunny hops’ (crawls pulling both legs forward together). Seat holds legs apart. The ‘chimney’ helps child keep his arms up and apart.
different forms of the roller seat.
Stable for the beginner
Design from Handling the Young Cerebral Palsied Child at Home, Finnie

WALKERS FOR SITTING AND STANDING

play horse roller seat with attached bar on the back to walking.

SPIDER WALKER

girl walking with spider walker.
Useful for the small child severely affected by cerebral palsy.
Pad the frame
bolt
rounded padded seat


SADDLE-TYPE WALKER

child moving in seated swing in saddle walker.
Design from UPKARAN Manual.



This page was updated:19 Jan 2018