At one time, wheelchair sports were about… well… wheelchairs. However, today, while you may require specialized equipment, adaptive sports are more about inclusion than wheelchairs.
Nowadays, while formal wheelchair-based sports competition remain, the recreational market is where most of us enjoy adaptive sports, whether it’s a hand-cycle to ride with our children or a tennis chair to hit the court with our spouse. So, let’s look at what’s hot, from a pick-up B-ball game in the park to road racing.
Hammer by Colours
Playing tennis while using a wheelchair is a fantastic sport – and workout. Whether you play against another wheeler or an able-bodied opponent, tennis is a remarkably equalizing sport. In fact, tennis is so adaptable to those using wheelchairs, there’s only one rule change: wheelers are allowed two bounces of the ball before the return. Other than the “two-bounce” rule, tennis is game-on for all on the court. What’s also great about tennis is that to start, you don’t need to invest in a court chair – simply grab a racket and ball, roll out onto a local court and see how you like it. Interestingly, among some of the top wheelchair tennis pros over the years have been those using power chairs, so tennis is open to a vast range of disabilities.
Basketball is another great pick-up game, whether shooting hoops with your kids in the drive way, joining a game in the park with friends from the neighborhood, or participating in an all-wheelchair league. Grab a ball, find a hoop, and see if you’re the next “Chair Jordan!”
When it comes to getting more serious about playing tennis, basketball, or both, you have several wheelchair options. If only one sport is your passion, invest in a tennis- or basketball-specific chair. With a wheelchair designed for your sport, it will up your game and your fun. However, if you find you enjoy multiple court sports, invest in an “all-court” chair – it’s one chair designed to go from sport to sport remarkably well.
Top End Excelerator XLT
If you or a loved one uses a mobility aid every day, access over even a small threshold or step can present a challenge.
I’d like to offer some suggestions on how to correctly size a ramp, and discuss different options that are easy, affordable and available.
If you look at ADA guidelines on how to size a ramp, the regulations are based on what would be a comfortable slope for a person in a manual wheelchair to propel themselves up the ramp without assistance. Under those assumptions the recommendation is 1 inch of rise for every foot of ramp length. That make for very long ramps, indeed! That is the slope that is acceptable for permanent ramps on commercial buildings.
For today’s discussion we’re going to concentrate on Pre-fabricated portable ramps. This is the type you would use to allow access for an individual using a chair or walker going up a curb or a couple of steps. If you are using a scooter, power wheelchair or if you will have the assistance of a caregiver to help you the rules on how to size a ramp are much more flexible.
If someone is pushing from behind, you can easily size a ramp at 2 inches of rise to one foot of ramp length. The calculation looks like this: to get up a 6 inch curb, your ramp would need to be 3 feet long. (measure the height of the step and multiply by .5 to get that slope) That is an easy size for a portable ramp, and perfect to carry along with you in your car for access when there is no curb cut available. That style is called a suitcase ramp.
Thinking about great accessible getaways? Travel season is here, and for those of us who use mobility products, choosing a travel destination isn’t just about where we wish to go, but… alas… how accessible is it?
Ideal destinations for travelers using mobility products have three vital traits: overall accessible architecture, readily-available accessible transportation, and… of course… great attractions. However, finding all three is tricky, so let’s look at a short list that may narrow down the process, with a varied selection of tastes in mind.
Sin City is also Wheel City, ranking arguably as among the most accessible vacation destinations. From never having to wait for an accessible cab – they’re everywhere! – to an entirely accessible architectural infrastructure to the best accessible hotel rooms, Vegas knows mobility. A misnomer is that Las Vegas is for gambling and other indulgent activities. However, the Las Vegas Strip over the past decade has evolved into a bit of a family affair, full of shopping, restaurants, and amusement rides. With themed hotels, stage shows galore, and attractions for all ages, Las Vegas truly is a family destination. Gambler or not, if you’re looking for fun times, you’ll be on a roll in Vegas.
Just over the Washington state border, Vancouver, British Columbia, is among the most beautiful and wheelchair accessible cities you’ll ever visit. Whether you’re looking for scenic coastal beauty or metropolitan flair, Vancouver, B.C., is a stunning city. There’s the Vancouver Aquarium, Classical Chinese Garden, Vancouver Art Gallery, and Science World – great attractions. Then, nature abounds with both accessible coastal and wilderness parks. And, let us not overlook that Vancouver, B.C., has among the world’s finest cuisine, from seafood to virtually every ethnic delight imaginable.
Gel Wheelchair Cushions are a great option to improve your comfort and more!
As you probably know, if you spend longer than an hour or two in a wheelchair you should definitely be seated on a cushion of some sort to relieve pressure, and make you more comfortable. A cushion is a necessity, not a luxury!
Jay Union Gel Wheelchair Cushion
Gel Wheelchair Cushions are intended to help relieve pressure on your ischia’s (sit- bones) coccyx (tail bone) and the back of the thighs. Relieving pressure in those areas is so important for two reasons:
Comfort Company M2
First, because pressure related skin break-down occurs from the inside out. The ischia’s and the coccyx are pressing against your muscles and tissue as you sit for prolonged periods. That pressure results in soreness and redness to begin with, and will progress to actual pressure sores if it’s not taken care of. Nobody wants that to happen, so take measures to relive the pressure using a Gel Wheelchair Cushion as prevention of pressure sores.
Next, Gel Wheelchair Cushions can help you with your posture. A common complaint among wheelchair users relates to back pain, leg pain and muscle strain after sitting up in a wheelchair for too long. A Gel Wheelchair Cushion can offer positioning benefits if you choose one with contoured construction, intended to help you sit straight and square in your chair. Some gel wheelchair cushions also offer advanced positioning options such as foam wedges or build-ups to allow you to tailor the contours to your own body shape.
First observed in 1950, Armed Forces Day is held annually on the third weekend in May, this year being May 21, 2016. Armed Forces Day honors the dedicated men and woman currently serving in the five branches of the U.S. military.
Air Force Master Sgt., Israel Del Toro, is one of those enlisted in the military. However, his story isn’t a typical one. Del Toro was on deployment in Afghanistan when, on Dec. 4, 2005, an IED explosion severely burned more than 80 percent of his body.
“We crossed this creek and I feel this intense heat blast on my left side,” Del Toro told ESPN.
“People talk about your life flashing in front of you … for me, everything started just coming in waves,” said Del Toro, then a father to a 2-year-old son. “And when I got out of the truck I was on fire from head to toe. I collapsed ‘cause the flames overtook me.”
“I’m thinking I’m gonna die here,” he said.