Top Tips for Maintaining Good Posture in a Wheelchair

Wheelchair It’s important to make sure that while you are in a wheelchair that you are maintaining proper posture. This is because, with the proper posture, you are reducing the pressure on parts of your body including the butt, thighs, neck, and spine. It also allows you to operate the wheelchair while exerting less energy. Proper posture also prevents you from improper technique while driving your wheelchair, reducing the risk of repetitive strain injuries. By reading on, you can get some of the best tips that you need to ensure that you maintain proper posture in a wheelchair.

Make Sure to Stabilize Your Pelvis by Using Proper Posture Support

One of the biggest tips that you can use is to make sure that your pelvis is stabilized. The pelvis is essentially the foundation of great body posture, so this should be the first place that you start. You want to make sure that the wheelchair seat is doing the work that it’s supposed to and is stabilizing your pelvis. 

So, what does this mean exactly? You need to start with the seat. First, you want to make sure that the seat is the proper size for your needs. For the seat to be the correct depth, you need to make sure that you can sit all of the ways back in the seat. Your bodyweight should be evenly spread throughout the thighs and butt. The correct width ensures that your pelvis isn’t twisting to one side over the other or that your pelvis isn’t sliding around. If your pelvis is sliding or twisting, this can not only alter the spine position of your body but can also damage your skin. You may be able to adjust the seat angle, which can reduce slipping and offer you better support should you have less than ideal sitting balance.

To help with this, you can also get a wheelchair seat cushion for improved posture support. But you want to make sure that you regularly maintain the cushion, otherwise, it can negate the good posture support from a great chair.

Be Sure to Stabilize the “S” Curves of the Spine Through Using Proper Posture Support

You may not realize it, but your spine actually has 3 natural curves to it, which is important for offering the best stability in your back. When you are not properly supporting these curves, you could end up having abnormal positions, potential long-term damage, and general discomfort.

To do this, you need to start by ensuring that the back width and height are correct since this is what’s essential to supporting the lower curve of the spine. You should also be able to adjust the back angle and back tension in order to offer even more posture support. If you have a great chair and are still struggling with getting the support that your spine needs, you could invest in other back support systems that could be necessary to get your spine the proper alignment.

Is there anything that you can do that will help you improve your wheelchair’s posture support? The good news is that you can sit upright, then bring your shoulders back, which should ensure that you are not leaning to one side over the other or that you’re not slumping. If you struggle with maintaining this position, you may not be getting the posture support that you need from your wheelchair.

Make Sure Feet are Supported for Optimal Wheelchair Posture

Even in a wheelchair, your feet are still supporting some of the weight of your body and will offer additional stability for the pelvis. If you don’t have adequate foot support, your body can easily get pulled out of alignment. 

The first thing that you should check here is to make sure that your footplates are in the proper height and position. The height needs to make it so that your hips and knees are at right angles. they are, this means that it’s more likely that your weight is evenly distributed. If you notice that your feet are too far out too far in front of you, this can cause your pelvis to tilt and will cause a potential risk of pressure damage and slouching. your feet are tucked too far behind you, this will push your pelvis in the other direction, which can alter the curves of the back from how they normally are.

Use the Support of Your Arms to Improve Wheelchair Posture Support

The position of your arms can make it so that your shoulders are pushed up or down. This can have a negative impact on your head position and the natural curves of your spine. You need to make sure that your wheelchair’s armrests are height adjustable. This allows you to adjust the arm supports to ensure that your shoulders stay in the proper position, allowing you to maintain good posture in your wheelchair.

Keep Your Head Centered

Ideally, your head should be centered, upright, with your chin having a slight tuck to it. You should also be able to look in a variety of different directions where your head is positioned. If your head falls out of this centered, upright position, this can cause your spine to lose its alignment and lead to discomfort for you. This is the final piece to ensuring that you maintain good posture in a wheelchair.

If you have difficulty keeping your head in the proper position, you may need extra head and/or neck support.

Conclusion

You want to make sure that you maintain the correct posture in your wheelchair to relieve pressure throughout your body and optimize your energy levels as you use your wheelchair. Whether you are new to a wheelchair or just need some help to make you feel better after spending some time in your wheelchair, this advice will help you get the good posture that you need to use your wheelchair more effectively and efficiently. You will notice a significant difference when you start maintaining good posture in your wheelchair, especially after spending long periods of the day in it.

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