Assessment of Field Rolling Resistance of Manual WheelchairsBy Sauret, Christophe; Bascou, Joseph; de Saint Remy, Nicolas; Pillet, Helene; Vaslin, Philippe; Lavaste, Francois; Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development, Volume 49, Number 1, pages 63-74
Publication Date: 2012
Study aimed to develop a simple method for assessing the user-specific rolling resistance acting on a manual wheelchair, which could be used during the provision of clinical service. Based on a simple mathematical equation, the method is sensitive to both the total mass and its fore-aft distribution, which changes with the user, wheelchair properties, and adjustments. Thirty-three different manual wheelchairs were tested on two typical indoor surfaces: a hard smooth surface and carpet. The rolling resistance properties of 3 types of front casters and 4 types of rear wheels were determined from measurements of a three-dimensional accelerometer during field deceleration tests performed with artificial load. The average results from these experiments were then used as input data to assess the rolling resistance on hard smooth and carpet surfaces from the mathematical equation with an acceptable accuracy. The method can be used with confidence by clinicians to help users make trade-offs between front and rear wheel types and sizes when choosing and adjusting their manual wheelchair. Implications for a future enlarged study to include other common indoor or outdoor surfaces or the modeling of the tire pressure effect on rolling resistance are discussed.
VA Rehabilitation Research & Development Service (Web Site: http://www.rehab.research.va.gov )
Link to text: http://www.rehab.research.va.gov/jour/2012/491/sauret491.html