Living more productively with my disability
This may sound simple, but it truly set the direction for me to live. That is when this remarkable adventure really began. I saw each day as an opportunity to figure out how to live and participate in this world from my uniquely defined starting point.
One of the things that helps me to do this, is technology, something that has always interested me and that I have made a career of. This interest often focuses on ways to enhance and assist in living more productively with my disability.
In early 2020, I had to upgrade my old wheelchair to a new Pride Mobility Quantum Q6 Edge 3 chair. However, due to the progression of my SMA, I also needed to add some other devices to my chair, in order to retain my driving ability.
With limited range of motion in my hand, I couldn't see how I could place all those switches close enough together for me to use.
Pairing mo-vis devices
First of all, I chose a Micro Joystick instead of a standard joystick, as it only requires 8.5 grams of force to drive. Needless to say, driving my wheelchair is a breeze now.
Secondly, I added a Hand Warmer to my chair. My hands get cold easily, and when they do, I lose what little strength I have. This makes driving almost impossible. Now, with a press on the button, warm air is blown on my hands and I can continue to drive without problem.
However, by adding the Hand Warmer, I now needed 4 switches:
- Turn the wheelchair on/off
- Change the modes on the wheelchair
- Control a bluetooth switch for my smartphone
- Control the Hand Warmer
With limited range of motion in my hand, I couldn't see how I could place all those switches close enough together for me to use. All the wires would also become a tangle mess.
That is why I consider my third addition as the most helpful of all to me: the Multi Switch, which is a great, empowering solution to me. It can be configured to allow one switch to control up to four devices. This has been an incredible help to me.
I highly recommend it if you are experiencing similar problems needing to navigate through too many switches on your chair.