A project which is designed to help elderly people recognise their walking frames is increasingly being adopted in care homes across the UK due to the impact it is having on reducing falls.
The Pimp My Zimmer project, organised largely by NHS commissioners, involves school children helping elderly care home residents and those living with dementia to decorate their walking aids.
A number of care homes, including one in Wales and another in Essex claim that the project has helped to reduce falls by around 60%.
It is claimed that adding more colour and vibrancy to grey walking frames helps people to recognise their own frame and also allows people with dementia to more easily pick out their frame, meaning they are being used where they might otherwise not be.
As part of the project manufacturers of walking frames are being encouraged to offer more and brighter colours on their equipment to encourage them to be used.
Recent research has indicated that access and mobility equipment needs to be appealing to elderly and disabled people else it is not used as much.
As a result suppliers and manufacturers in some sectors of the industry are already giving more attention to the aesthetics of equipment. But some feel that other parts of the market need to up their game when it comes to making aids appealing to users.