Nothing to do with disney, but question about tennis balls and walkers.

jo-jo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2011
Long story short, DH went in for easy gall bladder surgery. One night turned into 12 and two hospitals. He is now using a walker. He is home and we have home visit from nurses and PT. PT recommended putting tennis balls on the walker. We had a few old ones lying around, so I used them. A week later with only a trip to Walmart and church (all other walking inside house), they are worn thru. Is this common. Is it just that the ones we had, were already old? If things process as we hope, I see using walker for a month or two. If plan B comes into play, 3 or 4 months of use. Should I buy a gross of tennis balls?
 

arminnie

<font color=blue>Tossed the butter kept the gin<br
Joined
Aug 22, 2003
I don't have an answer about the tennis balls as I use a rollator. I do have a regular walker that I use to get in my car after I put my mobility scooter in the van with a lift, but I don't have tennis balls on it.

But I do sympathize with the gallbladder issues. I went in for a "quick" laparoscopic gallbladder removal in 2001. I was in the hospital for two weeks and had a tube out of my liver for two months. It was a nightmare as I was also in hideous pain much of that time also.

But I did get better! Tell him to hang in there.
 

jo-jo

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 28, 2011
Thank you for the encouragement. Yeah, I think we are looking at drains for a few months. Just hoping no further surgery. Thankfully pain isn't a big big issue. Tylenol one or twice a day is all he is taking. Right now most pain is from the staples. And those should be out on Tues.
 
  • lanejudy

    Moderator
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    Oct 27, 2011
    I’m guessing he is currently putting a lot of weight on the walker, which is why the tennis balls have worn through so quickly. I’d also suspect that as he recovers, and regains his strength, he won’t need to lean as hard on the walker and so eventually the tennis balls will last longer.

    Good luck to him on his recovery!
     

    BethCPTSD

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 4, 2016
    This is probably a very silly question, but is he dragging the walker when he walks or picking it up fully with each step? If it's dragging and he's having trouble picking it up completely, and that has to do why it's wearing thin, I would try a rollator like the PP mentioned above. Rollators of course, have wheels instead of flat bottoms, and it might be easier for him to use. Good luck. Sorry to hear about his difficulties.
     

    mamabunny

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 11, 2012
    Did your insurance company send out the walker from a medical supply house?

    If so, I would contact your insurance, (and the PT person who is making the home visits) and see if a rollator is possible and/or indicated. A rollator should have brakes that he can use to stop if he feels like it is rolling away - and the benefit of a built-in seat if he needs to sit briefly (in line at the store, or during coffee after church)

    If for some reason it's not possible to switch him to a rollator, then aside from the clever little skis that our @kaytieeldr found, you will maybe want to consider that bulk order of tennis balls...

    Good luck!
     
  • DisneyOma

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 27, 2015
    We use tennis balls on the legs of our chairs at school - the textured floor and metal feet are not friendly to kids with sensory issues, so we muffle the horrid scraping sound with the tennis balls. We get them from the tennis coach after the season is over. With kids in those chairs 6 hours a day, I've never had to replace a worn tennis ball. Perhaps the dragging isn't to the same extent, but I'm surprised. I'm thinking you've just got some really old tennis balls? A new tube of them should do?
     

    jo-jo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2011
    We use tennis balls on the legs of our chairs at school - the textured floor and metal feet are not friendly to kids with sensory issues, so we muffle the horrid scraping sound with the tennis balls. We get them from the tennis coach after the season is over. With kids in those chairs 6 hours a day, I've never had to replace a worn tennis ball. Perhaps the dragging isn't to the same extent, but I'm surprised. I'm thinking you've just got some really old tennis balls? A new tube of them should do?
    I think it's the outside surfaces that is wearing the tennis balls down.

    As far as tennis balls being old.....umm is a few decades too old??? lol We had them from years ago with the tennis rackets. Grand kids have been using them for throwing around the yard.

    I am getting new ones.



    This is probably a very silly question, but is he dragging the walker when he walks or picking it up fully with each step? If it's dragging and he's having trouble picking it up completely, and that has to do why it's wearing thin, I would try a rollator like the PP mentioned above. Rollators of course, have wheels instead of flat bottoms, and it might be easier for him to use. Good luck. Sorry to hear about his difficulties.
    No silly questions. I'm in new territory here. I had a walker 25 years ago with a broken ankle, but it seems that was the stone age with walkers.

    The walker has wheels on front two legs. He was told not to pick up the walker but to glide it along.

    I have considered getting a rollator for him , that way we can take a walk and if it's too much, he will still have a seat.
     
    Last edited:
  • jo-jo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2011
    I saw those skis somewhere, wasn't sure it that was better or not.

    His walker does have front wheels. I am half tempted with the cost, get another walker to keep in car. One for inside with tennis balls and an outside one with skis.

    Moving this to the disABILITIES Community Board since it doesn't directly pertain to WDW trip planning.
    I'm sorry, I didn't realize I posted in the wrong spot. Thank you for moving it.
     

    Silvermist999

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 6, 2010
    I always thought the walkers were for indoor use only. After my father had major surgery, he used a walker with skis inside the house and a rollator (with seat) outside of the house. His PT made this recommendation.

    Perhaps your PT could recommend a suitable rollator for outdoor useage. They are available for short term rentals, and should be covered by your insurance plan as long as a PT completes the paperwork.
     

    jo-jo

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 28, 2011
    I always thought the walkers were for indoor use only. After my father had major surgery, he used a walker with skis inside the house and a rollator (with seat) outside of the house. His PT made this recommendation.

    Perhaps your PT could recommend a suitable rollator for outdoor useage. They are available for short term rentals, and should be covered by your insurance plan as long as a PT completes the paperwork.
    Thank you for the suggestion. As I said, new territory for me.
     

    SueM in MN

    combining the teacups with a roller coaster
    Moderator
    Joined
    Aug 23, 1999
    The reason for the tennis balls is mostly for indoor use to help the walker glide over hard surface floors without scratching them and across carpet without getting caught.

    When used outdoors, they wear our really quickly. We don’t normally realize how abrasive outdoor surfaces are. Walking across sidewalks and parking lots is like walking across coarse sandpaper. Harder surfaces, like glides, will last longer, but still wear out.
     

    MouseOfCards

    Finally jumped in . . .
    DVC Premium
    Joined
    Feb 11, 2016
    The reason for the tennis balls is mostly for indoor use to help the walker glide over hard surface floors without scratching them and across carpet without getting caught.

    When used outdoors, they wear our really quickly. We don’t normally realize how abrasive outdoor surfaces are. Walking across sidewalks and parking lots is like walking across coarse sandpaper. Harder surfaces, like glides, will last longer, but still wear out.
    So true - the tennis balls wear out much faster when used outdoors. For some folks who usually stay indoors, we replace them about 2-3 times a year. (By the way, Costco sells a case of tennis balls at a really good price.)
     


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