Wheelchairs are usually categorized from the lightest to the heaviest and it caters to anyone who weighs up to 120 kg. A normal standard wheelchair will usually be delivered between 16-20kg, whereas a lightweight wheelchair will come in 12-16kg.
Different types of wheelchairs aim to serve the various purposes a user might have i.e. sports, office, roadtrips etc. If the user intends to use the wheelchairs for a temporary period while receiving therapy to recover from injury, it is recommended that he chooses a standard wheelchair. One reason being that this is cheaper as they are in abundance. A few facts about standard wheelchairs include fixed back, arm and foot cushions. They are also heavy to transport and propel.Since they are cheap, quality of their materials is questionable, some can rust as early as few months after delivery. Hence, it is important that we choose trusted manufacturers.
At the other end of the spectrum, lightweight wheelchairs are often customizable for the different components. It can even be made to let the user fit snugly into position. These are made in high quality stainless steel and is weather proof. Needless to say, all these come a more expensive price tag than the standard wheelchairs. But bargain lightweight wheelchairs are available still.
Even within lightweight wheelchairs, they are differentiated by their strength of materials. High strength lightweight wheelchair is the most robust and most function-able and provides extra ease of movement for the user. This kind is most recommended for users who engage in high intensity wheelchair sports and require most efficient wheelchairs. The next level is ultra lightweight wheelchair which is the top quality standard. If the user is facing a long term rehabilitation process, this class of lightweight wheelchair will provide him best comfort throughout the day. Users are advised to weigh their own needs and identify the most suitable wheelchair for him/herself.
For unfortunate individuals who have to use a wheelchair for life,
extra considerations should be given to purchase a durable, easy to use
and lightweight wheelchair. This is to lessen the impact of
inconvenience caused by the disability. For the other group of users
under physical therapy, lightweight wheelchairs can give them some form
of normalcy in terms of easy control and speed of movement. However, if
one is unable to afford a brand new lightweight wheelchair, he can
consider buying a used one which may be equally good as long as the
purpose is served.
A practical consideration when choosing lightweight wheelchairs is understanding the type of chair and the load limit on it. Wheelchairs come in different load limits depending on users' weight. Hence it is wise to choose a lightweight wheelchair that is able to support 20% more than your actual weight. The most suitable locations to purchase lightweight wheelchairs are the hospitals, rehabilitation centers and non-govt organizations supporting the physically disabled. There are specialists in these places who can advise you according to your needs. Make sure that the lightweight wheelchairs still have their warranties valid with the manufacturers.