Transport wheelchairs are smaller and lighter than standard wheelchairs, making them a perfect mobility aid for travel and daytrips. Due to their small wheels, transport chairs can’t be self-propelled and instead need to be pushed from behind. When choosing a transport chair, there are several things you should keep in mind.
1. Seat Design
Many transport chair seats are made of a flexible fabric stretched between the two sides of the chair. This simple seat design makes the chair lighter and easier to fold. However, if you plan to use the transport chair for long periods of time, you’ll likely prefer a seat with a layer of padding.
Some transport chairs offer a solid one-piece bar footrest, but it’s hard to get a perfect fit with those. I recommend getting a chair with separate, adjustable footrests so you get the best fit and can enjoy more comfortable trips.
Armrest designs also vary among transport chairs. Some are padded, others are firm. Some are flat, others are rounded. Choose the type of armrest you find most comfortable.
When choosing your transport chair, width is one of the most important considerations. If the places where you intend to use it have narrow doors and/or hallways, you’ll need a chair narrow enough to squeeze through them.
If you plan to go outside in your transport chair, you’ll probably want one with large wheels. Large wheels allow for smoother rides than small wheels and can traverse rugged terrain much more easily. Wheels 7 inches or above are considered large.