People with limited mobility have relied on wheelchairs for centuries to help them get around. But not much has changed in wheelchair design over the last 200 years. Modern wheelchairs use the same basic design that was developed many years ago.
All of that is changing. New wheelchair inventions make use of new technology and futuristic wheelchair designs that better meet the needs of the people who use them.
While the most important function of a wheelchair is to provide mobility to people who cannot walk, this is not the only feature that’s important in wheelchair design. For those who are long-term users of a wheelchair, a basic wheelchair won’t be practical. These users need some customization and special features, so the chair provides them with maximum mobility, comfort, and independence. Designers are coming up with new concepts to address these needs.
What are some of the new concepts and innovations in wheelchair design? While some are merely practical, others go for looks or futuristic models.
One feature of modern wheelchairs is the new hand rim technology which makes the rims ergonomic. These new designs have sculpted the hand rims to fit into the user’s hand, making it easier and more comfortable to propel the chair.
One innovative wheelchair design lifts the wheelchair user into a standing position. Only those who have some use of their legs will be able to make of this technology. But for these wheelchair users, these advanced wheelchairs give them more independence, as they can now reach many more items on store shelves without assistance.
For those who can’t use the sit and stand chairs, there are advanced wheelchairs that elevate the user to the height they would be at if they were standing. Many users appreciate this feature since it allows them to talk with people at eye level, instead of being at the level of a child.
One new wheelchair concept involves using a part that converts a standard manual wheelchair into an electric one. The gadget locks into the wheelchair’s wheels and is controlled by a joystick. This is a great option for people who can’t afford a power wheelchair.
For those who like to be out at night but are concerned about safety, illuminated wheelchairs might be the answer. Accidents have occurred because drivers failed to see the wheelchair user. Illuminated wheelchairs have lights that are powered by the rotation of the side wheels. The lights help the user navigate better in the dark as well as make it easier for others to see them.
A big issue for wheelchair users is not having wide enough hallways at times to get through and even the littlest of tasks that may include getting to a location using a narrow hallway becomes nearly impossible. A feature that allows wheelchairs to adjust the width would be extremely beneficial because that nightmare of struggling to get somewhere would be solved.
Having to go get around in an electric wheelchair that does not absorb any shocks and thus makes any ride uncomfortable especially in the uneven surfaces. A feature that would be of great help to have a smoother ride would be a suspension system that allows each wheel to elevate as much as possible when passing bumps.
When in a wheelchair it is very difficult to reach items placed on top shelves and even on the counters due to wheelchairs being sort of low. A feature that would help solve this issue would be installing a powered hydraulics suspension that allows the electric wheelchair to elevate to the desired height. This would make reaching for things much easier and wheelchair users would be able to complete a task without fearing of something falling on them due to having to reach out to pull on them.
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