Choosing The Right Wheelchair
Whether you’re in Scotland or Southampton, Wales or East Anglia our team at Ableworld will be happy to help you choose the best transit or self propelled wheelchair to suit your needs. Every team throughout all of our stores are trained to a high standard and all have the same ethics: We believe a mobility or disability product should never be sold to a customer unless they want or need it and we will never take the hard sell approach.
You may have noticed that we don’t sell wheelchairs online, that’s because we believe each person’s needs are different and when purchasing a self propel or transit wheelchair it should last throughout your ever changing needs. Our team will assess and demonstrate each chair which we feel is right for you. Unlike many companies the ‘right chair’ isn’t the most expensive or flashy, it’s the one most suited to your needs.
Although our team will help you it’s nice to go into store with an idea of what you’re looking for so this page is here to help. Below we’ve listed a few things to bear in mind when looking for a wheelchair and what features and benefits come with each one.
Before making any decision it is helpful to understand the different types of wheelchair that any mobility retailer can offer you. Wheelchairs are available in 2 main types, those with big rear wheels and those with small rear wheels. The difference being, the wheelchairs with the larger rear wheels are designed for users to be able to propel themselves which is why they are described as self propel wheelchairs, so users can maintain their independence. The wheelchairs with the smaller rear wheels, including the transit and travel models described below are designed to be pushed. It might be useful when shopping for a transit/travel wheelchair to not only test out the size of the wheelchair user, but also for the carer, friend or relative to come along and test how it feels to push with someone seated in it.
Travel/ Fold Up Wheelchairs
This design is fantastic for anyone who is looking for something for temporary use. Maybe you’re taking a family member on holiday or for a day trip and they’re recovering from an injury or surgery which will restrict the amount of walking they can do. A travel wheelchair will allow them to be a part of the experience without hindering their health.
A folding wheelchair is also a good purchase if you need a chair for ad hoc use. Perfect for people who maybe suffer with MS and some days struggle more than others or people who can mainly cope with a stick or walking frame but occasionally need that extra help.
Our travel wheelchairs start from under £100 which is great if you’re on a budget. However, if you’re looking for something to be used daily or permanently we would suggest a sturdier frame. Although folding wheelchairs are great they are designed for occasional or short term use.
When it comes to transit wheelchairs we have a wide range to suit all needs and requirements. Often people will want a lightweight wheelchair if they are dependent on an attendant. A lightweight or aluminium frame will allow easy manoeuvring and ease getting it in and out of vehicles.
Our transit wheelchairs come with different seat sizes which is great for the bigger or smaller person. When spending long periods of time in a chair there is nothing worse than the seat size being too small which may result in sores due to extra pressure on the side of your hips or aches and pains in your knees.
If you’re looking for a wheelchair which will be used in a commercial or business setting for many different people you may believe our budget chair is more suitable. Not only is it cheaper but it has vinyl upholstery which is easy to wipe and keep clean if many people will be using it.
Self Propel Wheelchairs
Our self propel range satisfies all needs whether you’re looking for a bariatric wheelchair or something flashy for about town.
Like with all our ranges we provide a budget model for people who may be recovering from an injury and therefore will be short term users who don’t want to spend too much money to our deluxe top of the range models which provide a streamline, lightweight frame with easy to access brakes and adjustable arm and foot rests.
So what should you consider when looking at any range?
- Are you looking for something for short or long term use? This will determine whether you need to consider a more robust model.
- Will you be likely to lift it in and out of a vehicle often? If so you may wish to consider an aluminium wheelchair over a steel frame, as their carry weight is considerably lighter.
- Will you be transferring in and out of the chair often? If so you may wish to consider something which has adjustable arm and footrests to make the transfer process easier.
- What is your budget?
- How big are you? Do you need to consider a bigger seat size due to being tall or do you need to consider a bariatric model?
We hope this page has been useful. Don’t forget to call into your local store for more information, assessments and demonstrations. We also have a large range of wheelchair accessories including gloves, bags, ramps and cushions to help you.
For more information on any of our products don’t hesitate to call your local store.