⑩ ① ② ③ ④ ⑤ ⑥ ⑨ ⑧ ⑦ - Canadian Red Cross

Wh eelchair
These instructions are guidelines only. Use only as instructed by your healthcare provider.
What is a Wheelchair Used For?
A wheelchair is used to provide functional mobility for
individuals who find it difficult to walk, or cannot walk. The
wheelchair may be self-propelled, or pushed by a caregiver.
How Do I Use the Wheelchair?
WARNING Stability and balance of the user in the
wheelchair are essential to its safe operation. In order
to ensure stability and balance:
• Always use your seat positioning strap, if available.
• Do not sit or transfer into the wheelchair unless the
wheelchair is fully open and brakes are on.
• Do not lean forward out of the wheelchair any further
Figure 1: Wheelchair
than the length of the armrests Å. When leaning
forward, ensure that the wheel casters Ç are pointing forward.
• Do not attempt to reach objects if you have to pick them up from the floor by reaching down
between your knees.
• Do not shift your weight toward the direction you are reaching as the wheelchair may tip over.
• Do not lean over the top of the back upholstery É. This may cause you to tip over.
• Do not attempt to ride over curbs or obstacles. Doing so may cause your wheelchair to tip
over and cause bodily harm to you or damage to the wheelchair.
• Do not tilt the wheelchair without assistance.
• Do not use an escalator to move a wheelchair between floors. Serious bodily injury may occur.
• Do not attempt to move up or down an incline with water, ice or oil film on it.
• Do not move across, go up, or go down ramps or slopes greater than a 4.8-degree angle (1"
rise for every 12" length).
Transferring Out of Wheelchair
WARNING Ensure brakes Ñ are on when transfering into or out of the wheelchair.
WARNING Consult your healthcare provider for guidance on the safest method to transfer
into and out of the wheelchair.
Moving the Wheelchair
• To move forward, release the brakes Ñ, hold the handrims Ü attached to the rear wheels,
and push forward.
• To move backward, release the brakes Ñ, hold the handrims Ü
attached to the rear wheels, and pull back.
• Try to push the handrim Ü around as far as possible. This will
allow easier and smoother movement of the chair.
Copyright 2011
WARNING When assisting a wheelchair user, use good body posture for your own safety. Keep
your back straight and bend your knees whenever tipping the wheelchair or moving over curbs.
WARNING The assistant must always let the wheelchair occupant know what he or she is
doing, and avoid sudden movements
• Going up curbs: Approach the curb squarely. Ask the wheelchair occupant to anticipate
tipping, and to lean back. Tip chair back by stepping on tipping bar á, and position both
front wheels on top of the curb. Lift back wheels up to curb by pulling up on hand grips à.
• Going down curbs: Roll down curbs slowly with the back wheels first.
WARNING Tipping a wheelchair without a tipping bar á requires two assistants, one at either
end of the wheelchair.
Unfolding (Opening) the Wheelchair
From Standing Position
• Move in front of the wheelchair.
• Push down and out on the sides of the seat upholstery â, keeping your fingers pointing
inwards (towards the center) to avoid getting them trapped. Push down until the wheelchair is
fully opened.
From Sitting Position
• On the wheelchair, grasp the back cane ä closest to you.
• Tilt the wheelchair towards you, raising the opposite wheels off the ground.
• Push downward on the top of the armrest Å closest to you where the seat upholstery â is
attached until the wheelchair is fully open.
Folding (Closing) the Wheelchair
From Standing Position
• Push the footrests Ö into the upward position.
• Move beside the wheelchair.
• Grasp the center of the seat upholstery â at the
front and the back.
• Lift up until the wheelchair is fully closed.
From Sitting Position (Figure 2)
• Push the footrests Ö into the upward position.
• With both hands, grasp the middle of the seat
upholstery â at the front of the back edge and lift up.
• Continue to close the wheelchair by grasping the
back cane ä furthest from you and pulling the
armrest Å towards you.
Figure 2: Closing the
Please ensure that equipment returned to the Red Cross is clean and in good condition.
Copyright 2011
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