My son has a mobility scooter that he has had since he was 6 or 7. He is almost 10 now. It is a 3 wheel go-go elite that is pretty portable. We use it for long walks, going through airports or school field trips. He loves his scooter and it has held up well. You can get a child seat customized, but that adds to the cost...for us almost double, so we just use pillows to support his back when we use the scooter. Here is a link to teh scooter.
It is pretty light when you take the battery off and fits in the trunk of most cars...
My 11 yr old with DMD has both a 4 wheeled mobility scooter and a Razor E200 S (the S means with the seat kit so they can sit down). Obviously the mobility scooter is safer, but it loses the coolness factor quickly, and it's big to transport. The Razor goes pretty fast and can be dangerous until they get the hang of it. Simon practiced on one without the seat, with my husband standing on the back of it to help him learn to balance. Simon can ride a bicycle still, so I'm sure that knowledge helped him too. And they definitely have to wear a helmet, and I would suggest knee and elbow pads at first too. The seat may be too high for a little guy of 6, it's almost too high for Simon as he has not grown in about 3 years now. Got it at Walmart for about $200 CAN. There is a E100 version which is smaller and less powerful, but I think you have to get the seat kit separately.
The local cops have stopped him to say they only want to see him on the bike path with it, while his friends can ride their bikes wherever they please. His new answer is 'I'm on my way to the bike path right now, Officer'.
As a mom, it was very difficult to watch him literally zoom off on the Mean Green Machine (Razor), but he loves the independence, and the wind on his face.
There is a family I know that uses the Zappy Scooter and the 11 year old is very happy with it.
We are in the same position as our son is 6 and he is getting a little uncomfortable in the child size stroller we currently use. We have a meeting set up with a wheelchair vendor to check out a manual chair and we also want him to try out a pride go go scooter and see which would be a better choice for him in the next year or two. My only question about the non medical scooters is if they are allowed indoors (school, airports, malls, etc) or if they are meant more for outdoor use. Our other concern is that he will run someone over! I guess it will take some practice if we go that route :) Good luck with what you decide! I honestly did not anticipate that this would be a tough decision...
HELLO I have been in the mobility scooter industry for thirty years and I am on the comittee that writes the US Standards for power wheelchairs and mobility scooters. I want to give you some resorces and suggestions when looking for mobility scooters. First, look at sites like usatechguide and find reviews of hundreds of units that anyone can submit. There are also dealer sites such as spinlife and edmonds wheelchair. Their reviewers have more restictive access. The reviewer may have to prove they have the product.
What to look for when buying a product. Both the scooters listed are made in China. There is very little regulatory controle ,FDA,of products made in China. In general, it is better to buy from a US manufacturer that brings the product in than a US distributor that brings it in: more quality controle and FDA oversight. The most important thing, for quality and safety, to look for when buying a scooter is incline rating. Higher stability ratings, 9 degrees or higher, require a better quality and performance brake, controler, motor and batterys. For a person around 100 LB that needs all day outside the home performance look for batterys that are 31amp hour or greater. In the reviews you will see many complaints that the 15 or 18 amp hour batterys on the toy travel units do not do the job outside the home. Some are recomended with expensive second battery packs because the small batterys do not give the range needed for a day. The smaller, more light weight the unit is the less stable it is. There are many more, FDA reported, seriour injuries and deaths on 5 to 8 degree scooters than 9 to 12 degree RESNA rated scooters. As a grandparent I wish you and your children the best.
Our son, age 9, uses a Zappy 3EZ scooter. It is a warehouse type scooter by design and we dropped the handlebars fitting a cool set of mountain bike handlebars and he can sit ot the seat and steer. It can go pretty fast, up to about 10 mles per hour, and is very stable and manouvres well. It is a little heavy but that hepls the robustness and it is comfortable on dirt as well as paved surfaces. He uses it to get around school and recently came 8th out of 70 boys in the school cross country on his Zappy :) We go for family walks and runs and he comes along.
Mobility scooter will be best for you kids instead of wheelchair cause it's more easy to operate.