After an individual undergoes surgery on the leg, it is most likely that the leg will still be quite weak and will need some time to heal properly, hence the need for assistance. A walker is a tool that is used to assist people in walking, most people who have suffered an injury on the leg or as a result of old age. A walker usually has four legs which are balanced and also help an individual to keep balance when walking as it could be leaned on for movement. Some walkers have wheels in front—on two of the four legs while some walkers don’t have any and it is even argued that a true “walker” does not have any wheel because it is not meant to be used to slide as some people do but to be used to walk.
However, these walkers could some times be quite difficult to move and the plastic bottoms may wear out eventually from clanging on the ground continuously when an individual is moving. This is why there is a costless and effective alternative of putting a tennis ball (lawn tennis) on the legs of a walker. A tennis ball as we all know is round-shaped and has a smooth surface all around its body. Fixing a tennis ball on a walker has its advantages as it helps the walker to avoid getting caught up in the sand. It also helps the walker to slide a bit easier when the individual is walking due to the smooth ball surface it has, this makes it very less likely to get stuck.
The good news about this is that you do not need to sit and take an online course on how to put the tennis ball on the walker or need to pay anyone to help you fix a tennis ball on a walker, you can do it by yourself, all within 5 minutes by simply following the outlined steps below. Two different methods will be discussed and you can pick any one which suits you.
First, you need easy-to-get tools such as:
- A nail
- A hammer
- A sharp knife
- The tennis ball
After you’ve got these, simply follow the steps below;
Make The Hole
The first thing to do is to use the nail and hammer to make a small hole in the ball—just to let out a hissing air. Note that the hole is just on a side of the ball and not to penetrate to the other side and to do this, you have to ensure the ball is firmly held so it will not pop out of your hands while drilling the hole with the hammer and the nail.
Remove The Nail To Reveal The Small Hole
The second thing to do is to remove the nail from the ball and the ball will be left with a small hole drilled into it.
Mark The Ball With The X Sign
Then you will pick up the knife and use it first to mark an X sign around the hole on the ball such that the hole is at the center or meeting point of the marked X sign.
Slice Through The Mark
An all but important cutting is the next thing to do. Ensure you carefully cut through the ball on the marked X to reveal an opening in the X shape on the tennis ball and be precise with it.
Fix On The Walker
Finally, put the ball on the leg of the walker and ensure it is tight enough so as to avoid accidents when it pulls out suddenly and you have it all worked out already. Yes, that is as simple as it is.
Another way to learn how to put tennis balls on a walker is learning this method of cutting the tennis ball which is one that is very straight forward but also a bit difficult as it requires a higher level of accuracy and preciseness on the part of an individual. In this method, you don’t have to go through the steps of drilling a hole in the ball or marking an X sign as all of that will be taken care of afterward but all you need is your sharp knife to cut through the tennis ball.
Going by this method, you will need to hold the tennis ball very firmly with one hand and use the other hand to penetrate the ball with the knife and from the center, cut it a little to the right and stop, take the knife back to center and cut it a little to the left—about the same length as the other one on the right. Repeat the same cutting but this time from the middle upwards and downwards also about the same length of the cut. After doing this successfully, you will see that you already automatically have the X marked shape as in the other method and you would have cut the ball open already, revealing the X-shaped opening. All you would be left with then is to fix the ball on the leg of the walker and ensure it is firm on it.
Furthermore, this second step could be said to be easier and faster than the first one but would require precision and experience, so it is advisable to start with the first method because it helps especially for those who have not tried it before and is easy to understand by just following the few steps outlined and explained above.
Benefits And Drawbacks Of A Tennis Ball On A Walker
It is important to note that putting a tennis ball on a walker, in addition to the above-mentioned advantages, helps to keep dirt away from the legs of the walker as the plastic bottoms could get specks of dirt jammed in them easily.
Also, a tennis ball is bigger than the usual rubber at the bottoms of the legs of a walker, which means it covers more surface of the ground and therefore could be said to provide more stability compared to the rubbers.
But truth be told, there is hardly anything that has an advantage alone without any recognition of a disadvantage no matter how minute it could be. The only notable disadvantage of putting a tennis ball on the legs of a walker is that it could injure the person using it if it gets too slippery. The surface of a tennis ball is hard and smooth, so when it slides over a very smooth surface also, it could end up making the individual lose balance and fall. The tennis ball could also pull out of one of the legs unknowing to the person using it the next step will definitely not be balanced and there would only be three equal legs and would, as a result, make the walker tilt towards the side where the ball pulled out from. When this happens, the individual is most likely to lose balance and fall.
Precaution to Take When Putting Tennis Ball On Walker
Nevertheless, the precaution to this is clearly stated and cannot be overemphasized. To avoid incidents such as this, always ensure the tennis balls are firmly fixed on the legs and are not slack. After some time, there is the tendency that the firmness will be giving away gradually. So you have to always check from time to time to be sure that the balls are still firm on the legs. If you can follow this safety precaution, you have no worries about losing balance or falling off as a result of the tennis balls on the legs of the walker.
In addition, there are ways we could also make the tennis balls perfectly fixed on the legs of the walker but one would need to visit the store or shopping mall to get a plastic that can be used to attach the tennis ball to the leg of the walker without any danger of getting pulled out as the balls will be firmly fixed.
Humans are curious and the world keeps evolving by the day in science, technology, and many other discoveries. The use of the walker in the place of the traditional walking stick is one of those improvements and it should not be a surprise if companies start producing walkers with tennis balls on the legs. This is a significant discovery as it makes using the walker easier and better with the reason being that, lifting up the walker with every move might become tiring, and especially to old aged people, it will look like a lot of work. So with the simple and easy step of slightly pushing the walker forward, for instance, the tennis balls will do the rest by sliding towards that direction and the individual will be able to move faster as well. Coupled with the fact that the tennis ball is relatively easy to find in any shopping malls or most stores around, it could be easily replaced in the case of one wearing out, unlike the rubber which definitely costs far more than a tennis ball. To sum up, this is an alternative that has been proven by all means to be cheaper, faster, and better.