Evaluation of a Wheelchair Roller Platform for Home and Community Propulsion Training

Rammer, Jacob ;   Cohen, Tamara L. ;   Harris, Gerald

Manual wheelchair use involves substantial risk of biomechanical injury to the upper extremities, especially in pediatric patients undergoing growth and development. Users can be trained on appropriate propulsion strategies using visual feedback and automated methods, which require a stationary platform. This work compares elbow kinematics in 12 pediatric patients tested with both a novel roller platform and normal surface propulsion. Results show no significant difference (p>0.05), and suggest that the platform accurately simulates propulsion. The system is intended to uniquely permit quantitative propulsion analysis in the home and community.