With so many motorized wheelchairs on the market today, it can seem like an overwhelming task to select one. However, it doesn’t have to be challenging to determine which electric wheelchair is best.
When choosing the best power wheelchair for you, it’s important to consider your needs. Everyone is different. A friend or family member may love his or her power chair, yet that doesn’t mean it’s the right type of motorized wheelchair for you. The best electric wheelchair is the one that meets your specific needs.
While undergoing an in-person evaluation for a complex rehab power chair, many times a therapist will work in conjunction at a seating clinic with an Assistive Technology Professional (ATP) who works for an accredited complex rehab technology company. The assessment helps determine which motorized wheelchair and components will benefit you the most.
Working together with the therapist and ATP, you can select the fully rehab capable power wheelchair that best meets your needs. First, you will decide on a power base. Factors that determine your power base choice include weight capacity and drive wheel configuration (front-, mid-, or rear-wheel drive). For example, the Edge 3 Power Chair features mid-wheel drive with a 300-pound weight capacity. If you’re looking for a front-wheel drive base with a 300-pound weight capacity, the 4Front® is more appropriate. If you require a bariatric wheelchair, the Q6 Edge® HD and Q1450 are some bariatric wheelchair power bases options.
The therapist and ATP will also discuss seating and positioning with you. For some people, a standard captain’s seat will suit their needs. At the other end of the spectrum, a person might need multiple power including power tilt, power recline, a power elevating seat, and a power articulating foot platform. TRU-Balance® 3 Power Positioning Systems can accommodate these requirements, with iLevel® allowing operation of the power wheelchair with the seat fully elevated at up to 12 inches while at speeds of at 4.5 miles per hour.
In addition, the power chair you order must meet your needs for electronics, cushions, and accessories. If you need expandable electronics, the chair must be able to accommodate it. The same is true for specialized cushions, vent trays, etc.
There are many factors that determine which electric wheelchair is best. When it comes to your mobility, choose the power wheelchair that best meets your requirements.