Yes, you will need to bring a physically-able adult with you. They will act as your ‘spotter’ during the training.
A spotter is someone who is present while particular skills are being learnt and practiced, to prevent you from falling out of your wheelchair.
Full instructions will be given to the spotter at the start of the training session, before any skills are practised.
Yes, I have full public liability insurance. Please note, you will need to sign an Order Confirmation Form stating you agree to the Services Terms and Conditions before training starts.
Anyone who uses a manual wheelchair for their mobility can be taught skills to enable them to use their chair more effectively and safely. How far an individual progresses depends on their individual physical ability and personal determination. I can teach children as well as adults.
Yes. A personal individual ability assessment will be completed over the telephone prior to a booking being confirmed. This will help me assess what skills may be possible and useful to develop, and to discuss what might be covered in the training session.
I can teach you how to use your chair safely and effectively. You and I will cover essential skills before perhaps progressing to more advanced skills as appropriate. Details of skills taught can be found here. All safety issues regarding each skill will be discussed, and each skill will be explained and demonstrated before being practised.
You can learn some skills in any chair and get better use of it. However, lightweight chairs are easier to manoeuvre and you are likely to gain more independent movement. Chair configuration will also make some skills easier to perform than others. For example side guards with arm rests will restrict the user’s ability to push the chair effectively. You can achieve effective pushing with arm rests (as some people may need them for postural support), it’s just that arm rests may restrict the movement of the arms when pushing the chair.
I am not an Occupational Therapist or Physiotherapist so I cannot give professional advice on chair set up. I can however make suggestions that could improve your ability to use your chair.
Yes, depending on equipment available at a venue I am happy to teach my own techniques for floor-to-chair and split-level transfers, and other more specific transfers such as getting in and out of a car. It is important to note that the ability to use floor-to-chair and chair-to-floor transfers depends upon a number of factors, including upper body strength, chair set-up, and confidence, and it is not realistic to expect everyone to have the physical capability. If you would specifically like to learn transfers let me know before the session is arranged in order to try and accommodate your request.
In addition to a spotter (see above), you are advised to bring any drinks and snacks with you that you may need during the session. All equipment for training purposes is provided, including spotting straps. You do not need push handles or anti-tip bars on your wheelchair.
I am based in South Buckinghamshire and prefer people to travel to me as I have a number of suitable local venues we can use that meet our training requirements. Venues will generally be village halls, community centres etc. which have sufficient internal space to practice essential skills. If you are unable to travel to South Bucks or prefer to meet more locally to you please phone to discuss this (see following FAQ).
I am prepared to travel from my base (HP10 postcode), with additional mileage costs charged at 40p per mile. I will need to identify a suitable venue in your area, and may need to make additional charges depending on the hire cost.
No, but I may be able to put you in touch with individuals that can offer advice and support.
A session will usually last 3 hours.
This will depend on how far you wish to develop your skills. Some people may find that a one-off session is enough to gain confidence and skills to meet their goals, whereas for others training over several sessions enables development of skills within a safe environment or allows more advanced skills to be learnt. Your needs and your goals for training will be discussed before the first session is arranged.
This will differ between individuals and depends on ability, confidence and amount of practice. You will be provided with reminder sheets outlining the skills taught in the session to take away with you.