Up until the present day, the typical design of the wheelchair models used by persons with disabilities has generally followed a somewhat dedicated commitment to function over form. From the introduction of the first lightweight, steel, folding, portable wheelchair in 1933 — a model known as the ‘X-brace’ — advances in the design and technology of newer machines have come periodically.
Factors in the advancement of wheelchair models — including propulsion method, control mechanism, and technology — are generally influenced by purpose and price. Newer wheelchair model categories include manual self-propelled, single-arm drive, reclining, standing, sports, and all-terrain designs that serve to enhance mobility freedom for their users.
As the focus on improving the mobility and lifestyles of persons with disabilities continue to garner attention, newer technologies and evolved creativity are responsible for four truly unique wheelchair models. Our post today highlights some remarkable wheelchairs — and how these designs enhance the mobility freedom of the people who use them. Continue reading
When 12-year-old Alexander Knoll saw a man in a wheelchair struggle to get through a heavy door in his hometown of Post Falls, Idaho, he was struck with an ingenious idea. What if there were an app or website that could communicate to persons with disabilities which stores in the area had automatic doors? And from that simple consideration, an adaptable solution was born.
The young entrepreneur went to work, developing the Ability App — a free accessibility application akin to Yelp which helps people with disabilities navigate public spaces by providing information about wheelchair ramps, disabled parking, braille menus and more. One visit to the Ellen DeGeneres show and a check from Shutterfly for $25,000 later, Alex’s idea is on its way to completion.
In fact, mobile apps for Android and iOS smartphones are rapidly helping people with disabilities to find their way around the world much better — and helping to live better lives in the process. From travelling guidance to accessibility hacks — even personal dating — here are the top 8 mobile apps for persons with disabilities. Continue reading
If you haven’t been keeping up with the latest advances in research for solutions to enhance the lives of those with physical disabilities, you might be surprised at what’s become possible. From improvements in prosthetic options to advancements in employment psychology, let’s run down the list of how science is working to enhance the lives of this unique community.
With the recent spotlight on physical disabilities — both from legal and functional standpoints — a great deal of progress has been made in improving capabilities and enhancing lives. The combination of science and technology has brought about advancements in both quality of life and the ability of persons with physical disabilities to contribute in the workplace. Continue reading
If you have an over-sized wheelchair or power scooter, there are a wide range of wheelchair lifts for vehicles to enhance your mobility freedom. From hoists to lifts, there is a portability option to help you prepare your vehicle for travel. Our 7-minute mobility guide will discuss available models along with the accessories you’ll need to complete the setup.
Exterior wheelchair lifts for vehicles are mechanisms mounted to the outside of wheelchair-accessible vehicles that raise, lower, and secure larger wheelchairs and power scooters for transportation. They come in various sizes and designs that match your mobility device and the type of vehicle that you use. Wheelchair lifts for vehicles can also be mounted to RVs and motor homes for extended trips — a popular choice for retirees and road-lovers. Continue reading
Handicap conversion vans go through a remarkable process of transformation to be made ready for wheelchair drivers and passengers. Expert mobility technicians go through a painstaking series of preparations to ensure that the vehicle is adjusted for fit and safety. Today’s post will highlight this conversion process — from initial measurements to the fitting of accessories — and give you a new appreciation for your adaptable vehicle.
If you’ve ever seen a traditional automobile go through the assembly line, you know mechanical arms go flying and showers of sparks fill the room. But handicap conversion vans go through a more intimate process — with expert mobility technicians personally seeing to crucial details that will keep you comfortable and safe.
It’s almost like these handicap conversion vans are created specifically for the people who buy them. And, here’s exactly how that happens… Continue reading
In 1990, Congress signed into a law an historic piece of legislation designed to protect individuals with disabilities. The American with Disabilities Act changed the disabled community forever — particularly with respect to employment, government services, public accommodations, commercial facilities, and transportation. And, later, 42 U.S.C. § 12101 changed the way this country made the handicap wheelchair van…
Which is precisely what we’re going to discuss in today’s post. A set of revised, enforceable accessibility standards called the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design outlined specific characteristics for wheelchair vans. These standards improved significantly the safety and security for passengers of adaptable mobility vehicles. Although they are not required in every vehicle, buying a handicap wheelchair van for the ADA-compliant label is an assurance of quality and safety. Continue reading
There are few things as physically exhausting and mentally draining as shopping for wheelchair access vans. Driving long distances to car lots with a decent inventory. Moving across massive campuses — often under the glare of an afternoon sun. Dealing with pushy salespeople. Trying to keep track of what you’ve seen.
But imagine if you could shop for wheelchair access vans without ever leaving your home. Sitting in your pajamas having a second cup of coffee. Telling your computer exactly what kind of vehicles you wish to browse — right down to your favorite color. No blinding sun or aggravating rain. And no pushy salesperson trying to get you to buy the one wheelchair van he happens to have on the lot. Welcome to the future of car buying. Continue reading
Adaptable living for disabled individuals is experiencing a renaissance. A community of companies — both established and start-ups — are pushing independence. At the intersection of technology and adaptability is a new generation of handicap equipment that help people live extraordinary lives.
The inspiration for the handicap equipment featured in this article comes from the basic activities most people take for granted. However, the assisting mechanism completes these ‘mundane’ tasks in rather extraordinary ways. So, if you love the phenomenon of advanced technology leveling the playing field — and helping to turn the ‘difficult, if not impossible’ into everyday victories — this blog post is for you. Continue reading
When you consider the implications of an accident in an adaptable mobility vehicle, safety features take on a whole new importance. Major vehicle manufacturers spend millions each year in research and development to improve the safety of their vehicles. Wheelchair tie downs are a primary focus of these efforts.
Your life literally depends on the vehicular safety gear that keeps your wheelchair locked into place. And while there are a variety of gadgets and contraptions that assist in this effort, your wheelchair tie downs are arguably the most important. Let’s take a closer look at wheelchair tie downs — and more specifically, how they work, brand and model options, and what to look for in choosing the very best models. Continue reading
The development of handicap hand controls for driving has opened new opportunities for special needs drivers with physical limitations. Let’s take a closer look at this adaptable mobility phenomenon — how it’s taken advantage of new technologies and what the future might hold for hand controls for cars.
Adapting the traditional steering wheel to drivers with disabilities has taken researchers on some fairly ingenious routes of development. From rotating knobs to grip extensions to braking and acceleration, handicap hand controls for driving are improving both accessibility and control. As we come closer to the dawn of the self-driving vehicle age, here are some of the most recent advancements in handicap hand controls. Continue reading