Originally Posted by Bete
and you will get use to it with practice, hopefully. I would absolutely consider going to a local zoo for a day trip and renting a scooter and practicing there. Disney will still be harder with a scooter, but I think this is the best way to get started using a scooter. This is a good way to find out if a scooter will work for you, too. You don't want to find out at Disney this will not work. As an alternative you may have to think about pushing a manual wheelchair. I pushed my mom in a wheelchair for 5 years; she could never deal with an ECV; she had Alzheimer's disease. Some rides will fit a wheelchair like Buzz Lightyear or Toy Story Mania or the Jungle Cruise, but will not accept a scooter. I'm not sure, but I think you can transfer to a wheelchair on hand from Disney at some rides. The zoo scooter will be more like what you will be driving for a scooter at Disney. The store scooters are bulkier and harder to use than the smaller, portable rental scooters. The zoo scooter will be a good way to know if your mom will be able to handle and use a scooter.
My MIL had a little trouble using a scooter. She just wasn't coordinated enough. We did survive one trip with her by going on tortoise speed instead of hare speed with the scooter. We gave her a lot of help like parking it for her and getting it on and off the buses. We did the parks during the off times like early morning when the park would be less crowded. I was on guard with the traffic at all times through the parks.
Please be cautious on all counts; you need to keep your mom safe during the healing process. It may even be too difficult to get on and off a scooter for her without affecting her knee. You may have to assist her on and off the scooter. Get her to the ride and you or someone in your party should park it for the rides when you get there. You can use a scooter through the ride lines, but there can be a lot of turns in the ride queues. Getting on and off some rides can be a challenge. What comes to mind are boat rides. You need to take a pretty big step in and out of the boats. When we did Disney with my MIL there was someone on both sides of her for balance and lifting her in and out. Also, some rides have walking conveyors that move. On some rides this can be stopped and on other rides it cannot be stopped. Spaceship Earth in Epcot is one ride where they can't stop the walking conveyor.
For a couple of Disney trips we concentrated on the shows, live entertainment, parades and fireworks more than the rides. If you are going in late November there will be extra Christmas shows to see, too. Your mom may have to sit it out if some of you need to do thrill rides and such. I would alternate the activities; so, she doesn't have to feel left out too much. I would have someone keep her company at all times if she has to sit out for a ride.
I'm not sure about your travel arrangements, but if you are flying you absolutely need to get a courtesy wheelchair for her in the airport. If you are car driving to Florida I think I would avoid the buses and use your car to get to the parks. There are portable, travel rental scooters that come apart into 4 to 5 pieces that fit in most car trunks. This is not hard to learn how to do. I would say as long as you mom is not over 225 pounds the smaller scooter should work for her. If she's tall you could have some issue with a small scooter. The area for the feet is not a big area.
Personally, I think you might be better and safer using a travel, foldable wheelchair. On sale you can buy one for $99 to $125 without tax. Travel wheelchairs can weigh on the light side around 15 pounds. Some wheelchairs can weigh 50 pounds; so, you have to be careful as to what you get. If you are car driving it will be useful to have a wheelchair for rest stops while using a restroom or eating and so forth. You can take one on a plane free of charge.
I'm not sure about your arrangements for the trip, but if you are 45 days out you can cancel the trip without penalty from Disney. You can change your dates to a better time. Everyone heals differently and your mom may be slow to recover; there's no way to know, right now. For airfares, you may have to eat a cancellation fee, but you can get air credit towards a future flight.
Bolding is mine...
We were being loaded on SpaceShip Earth on Monday, July 23, 2012 and they definitely stopped the moving walkway to load a VERY FRAGILE elderly man. We were loaded into the car behind him. It took the young couple at least 2 to 3 minutes to get him situated and the CMs did NOT assist in any physical way but they Definitely stopped the circuluar walkway at the area where you normally disembark the ride. There was even a little boy who was to be loaded behind us who tried to climb over the unopened vehicle ride door because the parent was not paying attention to what he was doing. And the CMs had to take their attention away to deal with him. And when we returned to the unloading zone, the CMs again stopped the walkway for the elderly gentleman to disembark the ride. I don't know how long it took for them to get him off the ride because we went ahead and got off and walked around him as we were asked to do by the other CM since our vehicle ride door had slid open. But I'm not sure why you think SSE moving walkway doesn't stop, because it can be done. Just thought I'd share this with you so that you know it can happen.
Originally Posted by peemagg
One thing to think about when renting a ECV, is that 4 wheel scooters have less room for you feet. With a 3 wheel one you can stretch the leg out more, since there is no wheel in front of it.
When I bought my scooter, I was in a boot and had other issues with the legs. I tried both styles and found the 3 wheel one to be more comfortable. I am assuming that your mothers leg will not be able to fully bend yet, which would make using a 4 wheel one almost impossible to use.
I must respectfully disagree. I think it depends on the model. I have a four wheel model that I think gives me WONDERFUL foot/leg Room. I can stretch my legs out STRAIGHT and rest my ankles over top of each wheel. I could NOT do that on any 3 wheel models I tried. My leg would fall off the side. I've had a bad right knee for 25+ years now. And having it bent all day, YIKES!
My knee would be the size of a melon at the end of the day due to swelling! To each his or her own, but I would not rule out all 4 wheel models. I think mine is fabulous. I would buy it again in a heartbeat!!!