There are those with a disability who have needed a wheelchair for their entire lives in order to remain mobile, while for others, illness and/or ageing has meant that wheelchair use has increasingly become a necessity when travelling longer distances. A lightweight wheelchair can help in either of these situations.
Reputable suppliers of lightweight wheelchairs in the UK, such as Karma Mobility, can provide individuals with advice on which models would best work for their particular circumstances. In the meantime, anyone considering buying a lightweight wheelchair would do well to think about these 5 different factors, which will affect their purchase:
Self-propelled lightweight wheelchairs require the user to have adequate upper body strength to push off and keep moving. For individuals who do not have enough physical strength, they will either need to rely on a carer to push them around in their wheelchair or they will need to consider investing in a powerchair.
Once again relating to physical strength and stamina, individuals should think about how often they will use their lightweight wheelchair. Will it be for occasional use outdoors on longer trips? Or for consistent use indoors and outdoors every day? This will help an individual determine whether they have the appropriate level of fitness to manage with a lightweight wheelchair.
Lightweight wheelchairs come in a variety of sizes, shapes and weights. Ultra-lightweight versions can weigh as little as 9kg, which makes manoeuvrability much easier.
Lightweight wheelchairs come with varying levels of customisation and adjustability. Seat to ground height, tilting backrests and seat depth are all potentially adjustable and can make a big difference to a user’s comfort levels, especially during prolonged use.
Lightweight wheelchairs are generally cheaper than powerchairs but there is still quite a range in terms of cost, from a few hundred to a few thousand pounds. Users will need to consider whether a basic model is enough to meet their needs or whether they will need to invest in something with more features.
Test it out
To meet the criteria raised by each of these 5 aspects of choosing a wheelchair, users will likely need to explore different options and test out a few wheelchairs in-store.