Published 11/03, Copyright 2003, WheelchairJunkie.com
Super-Lows to the Rescue|
-Mark E. Smith
They aren't faster than a speeding bullet, or able to leap tall buildings in a single bound --
Super Man, they're not. However, they can fit your knees under your desk, or ease board transfers -
that is, super-low seating systems to the rescue!|
Up until several years ago, if you needed a
power tilt seating system for pressure relief on your powerchair, you had to give up a lower seat-to-floor
height, likely sacrificing such environmental access necessities as fitting your knees under tables,
or achieving appropriate transfer heights. Along with power seating goes complex mechanisms - actuators
and linkages - and they required considerable space above the powerbase, naturally increasing the seat-to-floor
height by as much as 4". The result was often a powerchair that was too high for some everyday applications.
With the evolution of mobility products in recent years, increasing emphasis has been placed on environmental
integration, including reducing seat-to-floor heights. It's no longer acceptable for power seating systems
to merely provide pressure relief; rather, it's vital that they allow full function within one's daily
living - hence, the expanded offerings of super-low seating systems.
Most often, there are two
aspects to a super-low system: the super-low seating, itself, and a modified powerbase. The typical
mode toward creating a super-low system is in seat mounting points that eliminate all excess space between
the seat and powerbase, and then modifying the powerbase so that the seat actuators and linkages can
drop within the powerbase. The result, then, is not just a different seating system, but a different
powerbase configuration, as well. These alterations can affect suspension travel, battery capacity,
or charger port locations, to name a few, so it's very important to fully understand exactly what changes
may occur to the base specification of the powerchair you're ordering.
Questions to answer before
ordering a super-low seating system:
What is the exact seat-to-floor height?
the seat-to-floor height turns out lower than you need once you have the chair, can it be raised?
What structural changes will be made to the powerbase?
Which size batteries will the system dictate?
Will the system restrict battery access?
Does the system feature center-of-gravity adjustments,
both when tilting, as well as for mounting on the powerbase?
What's the weight capacity?
much height will your seat cushion add to the seat-to-floor height?
Popular Super-Low Packages:
Powerbase / Seating System
Quickie P220 / Motion Concepts
Quickie S646 / Motion Concepts
Invacare 3G Storm / Motion Concepts
Invacare M91 / Motion Concepts
Invacare TDX / Motion Concepts
Jazzy 1420 / Motion Concepts
Jazzy 1121 / Motion Concepts
Jazzy 1122 / Tru-Balance
/ Tru- Balance
Quantum Rehab Tru-Balance
Alas, by doing a little product research, and asking insightful questions about your next
power seating systems, you can roll lower than a dinning table, and transfer onto beds in a single bound!