There are two types of folding walkers: folding walkers with wheels and folding walkers without wheels. Folding walkers without wheels are the standard walkers with a frame and four legs. They are rather basic by looks but very stable.
Folding walkers with wheels are ideally walkers with two front wheels or walkers with four wheels for quick and easy movement. A folding walker can also be a heavy-duty wheeled or non-wheeled walker which is simply a folding walker designed for overweight or obese users.
The greatest benefit of folding walkers is their portability. Once folded down, they are less cumbersome and less bulky and can easily be carried around.
Folding walkers are a great choice for people with limited space as they fold down to a compact size that you can easily store under the bed or in a closet. They are also a great alternative for people who travel a lot or generally love to be up. and about since they fit easily into the trunk of a car.
Another great benefit of folding walkers is that on tight spaces, doorways, or hallways, they can easily be folded to fit through. It helps that folding walkers for seniors are built with easy-to-operate folding mechanisms.
Considering getting a folding walker for yourself or your loved one?
Well, you are in luck because we have a great selection lined up for you as well as a detailed buying guide to help you find the most suitable folding walker.
Review of the Best Folding Walkers for Seniors
Karman Extra Wide Bariatric Rollator
Karman Healthcare Extra Wide is our first selection and unlike the rest that we will review, this one is a bariatric rollator walker. With a weight capacity of 400 pounds and made of aluminum, this folding rolling walker is considered the most lightweight heavy-duty walker at just 20 lb.
The bariatric rollator walker folds down easily proving to be convenient for travel and storage. It is available in two colors, blue and burgundy but we love burgundy the most. We find it more appealing.
To add to the convenience, the folding walker is equipped with an under the seat storage bag to provide the user with a place to store their easy-to-reach personal items like a wallet, keys, phone, and so forth. The basket is removable so you can always remove it when folding down the walker or when indoors and you don’t need to use it.
Additionally, the walker is built with push-down hand brakes, larger wheels, ergonomic handgrips, a padded flip-down seat, and the ability to adjust its height. The adjustable range is between 35” to 35” which is not so big a range but at the very least caters to users between the height of 5’6” and 6’.2”.
The lightweight walker is super easy to assemble, you only need to fix the backrest and adjust the handle height and you are good to go!
Overall, our bariatric choice is solidly built making it one of our best walkers. With a steel frame, it is no doubt sturdy, stable, strong, and durable. At such a great price, the quality is incomparable to other folding walkers in the heavy-duty category.
Medline Blue Compact Folding Paddle Walker
Sitting second on our list is the sleek and stylish Medline compact folding paddle walker. Part of the reason it stood out for us is the calm sky blue color on the entire frame.
The walker comes with a paddle folding mechanism that is super easy to operate even for the frailest seniors. You can either pull or push the paddle to activate the folding mechanism and the front legs and back legs will automatically fold up to collapse the walker to a compact size that is easy to store and transport. And it doesn’t take much space, you can even just store it behind your door.
The model comes with two five-inch wheels and extension legs. Easily convert the walker into a rollator by attaching the wheels and switch back to a traditional walker by removing the wheels and extension legs. Convenient, right?
For added safety, and stability there are dual crossbars on the front of the walker. This additional layer also reinforces the walker making it more durable and ideal for indoor or outdoor use.
With a weight capacity of 350 pounds and an adjustable height of 32″ – 39″, Medline compact folding paddle walker is recommended for users between 5’5″ – 6’4″. Assembly is pretty easy and quick- no tools needed and even though it is extra wide, it still fits easily through most doorways.
The walker comes just as basic as you can tell from the photo, but you can always make modifications to add handy accessories like a cup holder, storage pouch, cane holder and you can even add a removable memory foam seat.
Drive Clever Lite Walker Rollator
The Clever Lite Walker from Drive Medical is another folding walker that we highly recommend for seniors because of its impressive design and solid construction. We particularly loved that the large 8” wheels and casters can either swivel or stay in a fixed position. This makes turning on sharp corners so much easier. You simply switch to swivel wheels when you need to make a tight arc and switch back to fixed when on a straight path. And it’s not hard switching between the two modes, simply lift and turn the pin on the side of the legs.
The large size of the wheels also qualifies the Drive medical walker for indoor and outdoor use.
In addition, the folding wheeled walker comes with easy-to-use feather touch hand brakes as well as a foldable and padded built-in seat for extra comfort. The seat allows you to take breaks whenever you are tired of walking.
A feature we’ve seen in this walker that is uncommon on most traditional walkers is the dual lever side paddle release mechanism that allows the rollator to fold to the sides rather than down. And we loved that it folds up very easily and to a compact size that is not cumbersome to carry. You can easily fit it between the front and back seat of your car if you so wish but it still fits in the trunk.
We also loved that the folding walker comes with a wide seat that even though is slightly padded, it is comfortable and stable enough. The built-in seat is a flip-up and flip-down kind.
To add to the comfort and stability, the walker comes with a contoured and cushioned backrest. The flexible backrest helps to support the back so that you don’t end up straining your back.
Lest we forget, the handles are integrated into the frame. This can only mean one thing- no handles breaking down on you or coming off.
To crown it all, this Drive Medical walker comes with a lifetime warranty on the frame and a limited warranty on some parts.
ProBasics Transport Rollator
ProBasics is not a new name in the industry. If anything it has made a great reputation for itself for continually making excellent and affordable well-designed mobility aids. A good example is this ProBasic Transport Rollator, a versatile folding walker that doubles up as a walker and a wheelchair and comes complete with a fold-down footrest to place your legs when being wheeled. You must have noted by now that very few walkers serve both roles so a thumps up to ProBasics for being thoughtful.
For the price, the walker is reasonably made. Solid and sturdy. The frame is made of aluminum so it’s lightweight, although not the lightest of the pack as it weighs 22 pounds.
It has a lower weight capacity than all the folding walkers we’ve reviewed, it supports users weighing up to 250 pounds. This is something worth keeping in mind if you plan on buying it as your main walker.
Given this folding walker’s modest price, the adjustable range is considerably broad. You can adjust it 5” up or down.
One of the few things we really liked about this walker is how conveniently placed the storage basket is. Right under the seat where it doesn’t get in the way of your movement and is also easy to access.
A close second for us is that the walker comes mostly assembly. This is great because, as a two-in-one, it can be hard to figure things out. With it pre-assembled you only need to do minor configurations to get it ready for use and obviously learn how to switch between the two modes.
Perhaps the only cause of alarm for us, which you should really give deep thought is the fact that the seat is narrower (14.25) and not as deep (13.5”). That said though, the seat is padded, comfortable and comes with a supportive roll bar backrest
Even though the walker is a two-in-one, it is primarily designed to be a walker and should only be used as a transport chair for shorer periods. It’s not very comfortable as a wheelchair.
What is the difference between a folding walker and rollator?
A folding walker can be any type of walker with a folding mechanism. This can be a traditional walker, a walker with two wheels, three, four, or more wheels, or a heavy-duty walker. As long as it can be folded down or to the sides, it’s a folding walker.
A rollator on the other end of the spectrum is a walker with rolling wheels and features hand brakes and in most cases a seat. The name rollator is derived from the action of the wheels rolling. A rollator often has swivel wheels but even with fixed wheels, it’s still considered a rollator since the wheels roll forward unlike in a traditional walker where you have to lift to move.
A rollator can have three, four, five, or even more wheels. It can also be a folding walker, meaning it is foldable. Basically, the difference is not so much on their design but on how they operate.
How to Choose the Best Folding Walker for Seniors
Finding a suitable folding walker isn’t rocker science of course, but besides ensuring that it is indeed foldable, there are a few other things you also want to check which we cover below.
First and foremost, you want to be sure that it is foldable and that it folds easily and quickly with no ounce of struggle. This is important especially if you suffer from arthritis or other conditions that make you frail.
Next is to check what type of folding mechanism the walker has. There are walkers that come with a push or pull button release which seems to be the easiest to open and shut. Such a walker is sometimes referred to as a button folding walker. This folding mechanism is mostly on walkers that fold down. Walkers that fold to the side often have a dual lever paddle release.
Far and away from the folding mechanism, the important thing is that it folds easily and to a compact size that is easy to stuff in a closet as well as load into the trunk of your car.
Next up is durability. Folding walkers especially need to be made strong, sturdy, and be able to stand up to the years of use. The constant shutting and opening can quickly wear and tear it down. Walkers made of aluminum seem to have the best balance between being durable and lightweight. Steel too holds up well as long as it is not heavy-duty steel.
Just because a walker is foldable doesn’t automatically mean it’s portable. Further from it, a walker can be foldable, yes, but too bulky and cumbersome to carry around. Wich beats the logic of having a foldable walker anyway.
That said, get a walker that is light so that its easy to carry around. Anything above 24 pounds is considered heavy, however, this will also depend on your strength. The majority of the walkers we’ve reviewed are made of a lightweight aluminum frame because they are the most portable.
Like with everything else, you have put into consideration the price. Folding walkers vary in price just as they vary in design, style among others. The more complex and durable a walker is, the costly it is. Generally, folding walkers without wheels are less expensive than foldable rolling walkings. Overall, the cost could be as low as $50 to a shockingly $600 for a foldable bariatric walker. Therefore your choice will depend on what budget you have set aside.
There goes our detailed and honest review of the best folding walkers for seniors. We admittedly love the Medline Blue Compact Folding Paddle Walker for the most part because of its stability, adjustability, and unique folding leg design but also because it’s a pretty stylish walker. If you’d like a walker with a higher weight capacity, we’d suggest our second choice, the Karman Extra Wide Bariatric Rollator. It’s extra wide and can support a weight of up to 400 lbs.
Still, searching? We have a great selection of good quality and affordable walkers that you can browse here.