User Friendly Guide To Manual Wheelchairs

We have produced the following user friendly guide to​ help you select the most appropriate manual wheelchair for your needs.
Manual wheelchairs are powered by human power and come in​ 2 main categories;
Standard manual wheelchairs
These wheelchairs have large wheels at​ the back and smaller wheels at​ the front. These wheelchairs can me powered by the user, via the back wheels or​ by a​ companion who pushes using the handles mounted on the back.
Transportable manual wheelchairs
There are 2 main types of​ transportable wheelchairs on the market in​ the UK. The first of​ these have small wheels at​ the back and the front and can only be propelled by a​ companion and are generally the cheaper option. You can also purchase a​ folding wheelchair that mirrors the same design as​ a​ standard wheelchair with large wheels at​ the back. These chairs are often used by independent users who need a​ self propelling chair that they are able to​ lift into their vehicle.
Wheelchair weight.

Weight is​ a​ key issue when choosing a​ manual wheelchair and you need to​ ensure you make the right choice. Remember, a​ light wheelchair is​ easier to​ propel by the user of​ companion and will make transportation much easier, especially if​ lifting in​ and out of​ a​ vehicle. Generally it​ is​ best to​ get the lightest wheelchair you can afford.

Weight Limits

Before purchasing a​ manual wheelchair check the maximum weight limit of​ the chair as​ this can be an​ issue. Heavy duty wheel chairs are now available for those who have this preference.

To ensure comfort and ease of​ use you need to​ ensure that the wheelchair seat is​ a​ good fit. Always check the width of​ the chair against the user’s hip to​ hip measurements with a​ contingency for heavy winter clothing. it​ is​ generally recommended that the depth of​ the wheelchair should cover the distance from the users back to​ behind the knee.
The seat height should also be checked carefully to​ ensure the users feet sit comfortably on the footrests within their adjustable settings. The seat height is​ generally measured from behind the knee to​ the heel. Remember to​ account for the height of​ the seat cushion.
We recommend the user always tries the manual wheelchair before purchase, to​ ensure it​ meets their individual needs.

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