Tag Archives: mobility

Product News: Rollz Flex Shopping Trolley / Rollator

Sturdy shopping trolley

Rollz Flex Shopper / Rollator

Shopping can be a fun but exhausting activity and for anyone that has mobility problems or tires easily, the Rollz Flex Shopping Trolley, which double as a rollator,  could be the perfect solution.

Danish manufacturer Rollz, who are specialists in the ergonomic design of innovative mobility products are known for their award winning Rollz Motion Rollator. They have now produced another gem of a product with the Rollz Flex which has a very modern design and is ideal for anyone who may need a walking stick or a little extra support but who is not quite ready for a traditional rollator.

Topro Rollz Flex Rollator Grey

Rollz Flex Shopper with Denim Grey Bag

The Rollz Flex could easily become your best shopping buddy. It is lightweight and folds easily into a compact form for stowing in the boot of your car or storing at home. The push bar handle is height adjustable and can be positioned upright, or half or fully tilted forwards. When it is tilted forwards it can be leant on for support, just like a rollator.  The integral seat is there for when you need a rest and the push bar handle doubles as a back support when it is tilted fully forwards, for added safety.

Flex shopping trolley with adjustable handle bar

Rollz Flex Shopper with adjustable push bar handle

Every aspect of safety has been considered in the design of the Rollz Flex and therefore innovative drum brakes are included to provide safe and controlled braking and parking.  The manoeuvrable front wheels allow for easy steering and a threshold device is included on rear wheels for easy curb mounting.

The integral shopping bag is waterproof and holds a large capacity for storing all your shopping and the inner lining of the bag is removable and washable.  The Flex frame is available in white with either a Bright Purple or Denim Grey shopping bag.

Video Demonstration:

We think that you will love this product, we certainly do!

You can find more information on the Rollz Flex Shopping Trolley / Rolllator here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OneLeg Gardening and Posture Stools that Rock

OneLeg garden stool

OneLeg stool for gardening

Danish inventor, Susanne Schmidt was inspired to create OneLeg after finding an old “collar button” wooden, one-legged stool in her attic which had previously been used by her ex-husband, a bricklayer, for laying paving. The stool had a single wooden leg and flat top with a curved base to the foot.  Susanne took to using the stool in the garden to save her knees and back and after a while, felt sure that she could improve on the design to create a stool with a wider curved base that would prevent it digging into the ground.  She also wanted it to be self supporting, ergonomic, weather resistant, stable enough to allow a good working radius and suitable for use for all ages. With the help of a friend and a few prototypes later, OneLeg Low was created with the addition of the anti-slip foot and stool covers.

Oneleg kitchen stool

Oneleg stool is useful for jobs around the home

True to the simplicity and elegance of traditional Danish design, OneLeg stool alleviates the problems of aches and pains through kneeling and bending. OneLeg has a unique curved foot that allows the user to tilt and rotate around so that the stool simply follows the body’s movements. You will be amazed at the improvement in your core strength and concentration by using OneLeg.

OneLeg will save your knees and back whenever you have things to do at ground level. Rock and turn on the unique base; OneLeg will follow your movement, giving you a wide radius while strengthening your back and abdominal muscles. and your core strength. The curved base is gentle to the ground. It won’t sink down into grass or soil and can be used on both flat and sloped areas.

OneLeg Gardening stool 32-54

OneLeg Stool is available in four size options

OneLeg has also found a home indoors and can be used by the whole family. The freedom of movement offered by OneLeg is great for posture during work and play for a variety of uses. In addition to the OneLeg Stool Low, three new height options for OneLeg Stool Tall are also available allowing higher seating positions for desks or tables.

OneLeg has many uses around the home, whether it be cleaning out cupboards, grooming the dog or playing with the kids. The stools have also  proved to be popular in nurseries, schools and pediatric hospitals for the children, teachers and nursing staff. Whilst being fun to use, they are great for posture and it is never too early to instill good posture into your kids!

Oneleg childrens stool

OneLeg stool for children

The Roto moulded single piece plastic leg is completely weather proof in extremes of heat and moisture and is easy to clean. The silicon seat and foot covers provide extra comfort and grip, allowing an even greater range of movement and good posture. An anti-slip foot cover should always be fitted when using OneLeg indoors.

You can have fun mixing and matching the colour schemes of your OneLeg. The stools come in a wide range of colours, along with the colour co-ordinated anti- slip foot and seat covers. OneLeg also makes a great gift!

Testimonials from a professional Orthopedic  Surgeon, and Occupational Therapists on the benefits of OneLeg can be seen below:

Doctor Morten Kramhoeft
Specialist Doctor, Orthopedic Surgery, CFR Hospitaler A/S, Denmark:

“We have tested the new OneLeg stool and found it to be very suitable. On the curved foot you sit both active and ergonomically correct. It is easy to tilt and rotate the podium without twisting in the back, and it invites you to keep your back straight while working.
With the simple and nice design, that is easy to clean, it is suitable in our environment, where hygiene is of course important.

As a specialist in orthopedic surgery, I can highly recommend OneLeg to our patients.
It is important to sit dynamic and ergonomic. This applies to work at very low altitudes, avoiding twisting and strain in the back and knees when using the small OneLeg of 32 cm and the higher models for many of the everyday tasks at work table, dining table etc. But also in training and rehabilitation of both back, knees and hips. When sitting on OneLeg, it is possible to train the muscles in the mentioned areas without improper load.”

Physiotherapist Gitte Skov Frandsen, DK- Hillerod:

“OneLeg offers a flexibility that differs from ordinary stools and chairs. With the possibility to spin and turn on the stool, you can prevent twist of the back that could ultimately lead to overload of the back muscles.

OneLeg also gives you the possibility to strengthen your (stabilised) back and abdominal muscles. The stool offers a dynamic sitting posture, which makes is possible to change the working and sitting posture. This is very important for me as a physiotherapist.

OneLeg has many uses both inside and outside. Outside it is primarily used for gardening and inside there are a wide range of possibilities for both children and adults.

I could imagine using OneLeg for example for watching television. The sitting would be dynamic, which is healthier for the body instead of static sitting. The cardiovascular system improves as the body continuously moves.

OneLeg can easily be used by children as well as adults. I, myself, have children at home and they use it for playing, drawing, watching television etc. and they are happy with it. Children have a natural freedom and joy of movement that adults are missing. Intuitively they know what is good for them and we must try to instill this in adults too.”

Authorised Occupational Therapist Ingrid Hallas-Moller Frederiksberg, Denmark:

“I find the OneLeg stool suitable for children in day care and pre-school for daily gatherings and other meeting activities. The stool gives the child a dynamic sitting posture, which stimulates the child’s nervous system for more calmness in the body. Especially for children who are hyperactive, it is a blessing for them to be able to move around on the stool without disturbing others.

The occupational therapist’s work is to change the child’s surroundings and with the stool, it is the sensory perception that the child receives that corrects the behavior. I also use OneLeg in my therapeutic training of children with challenges such as motor control, balance and planning for example in conjunction with ball games. The dynamic sitting posture on the stool makes the child exercise their balance skills and corrects the body against gravity to maintain balance.

Adults can benefit from the OneLeg stool, when working with children. First, it is possible to communicate at eye level and secondly the adult will have their body’s dynamic balance exercised.

The stool has a nice design with vivid colours and can be use inside and outside, by children and adults.”

Anne Grethe Olsen, Ebeltoft School, Denmark:

“At the Ebeltoft School in Denmark we have two classes for young students with various challenges. The common denominator is that most children have difficulties sitting still and concentrating,  even just for a short while. Most of the students therefore enjoy their OneLeg ergonomic stools.

For instance, Tobias aged 7 needs to keep active to avoid going to sleep and to be able to concentrate on the lessons. When he sits on his OneLeg stool he enjoys to move to different positions without disturbing the others as he would have done with an ordinary chair.

Another student is Emil aged 9. He is very restless and moves around a lot but he appreciates being able to do this on his OneLeg stool despite of the small seat.

He thinks the stool is fantastic and it makes it easy to for him to find a new spot to sit in the class room. Even when he turns and rotates on OneLeg it does not slide out on him because of the silicone anti-slip foot cover.

Of course we have some students that do not like to sit on the stool. One of these children have a brain damage that reduces his sense of balance. He is afraid to fall off the one legged stool that rotates when moving his weight and therefore he prefers the traditional chair.

As an adult I also use the OneLeg stool. My task is to be close to the students in the class room and move quickly from one to the other. I need to sit next to the children and the OneLeg is light weight and easy to move around.”

Further information on the full range of OneLeg stools and covers can be found HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Product News – Folding Walking Sticks by Classic Canes

Camel Check folding walking stick

Folding Camel Check Cane

Folding canes are a great solution for when you need to keep your walking stick to hand but also like to pop it away out of sight when it is not required.

Our new range of women’s folding sticks by Classic Canes are real fashion statements, designed to co-ordinate with many an outfit.  Lightweight, attractive and height adjustable, the folding canes can be stowed away discreetly when in a restaurant or on a plane and will fit neatly into your bag or glove box of your car for when you need it.

Multi Tartan folding walking stick

Multi Tartan folding cane

The traditional derby handle offers excellent support to the hand as it can slip neither forward or back and may be popped over your arm when not in use. The sides of the handle are rounded for comfort and the strong, aluminium shaft folds neatly into four sections.

Floral black folding walking stick

Floral black folding cane

The adjustable height of these canes make them a safe, stylish, considerate and affordable gift for family and friends.

You can see our full range of walking sticks here

 

Future-Proof Housing For The Elderly

Grandmother and little girl making salad

As people get older, many think of downsizing.  With the ageing population, are builders really taking on board the needs of the ageing market? Is the construction industry fully aware of the need for accessible housing and does it have the knowledge to build properties that are accessible?

Regulations now require that all new-build properties have level access to the front door and a downstairs accessible toilet.  A friend recently purchased a new build house, which does comply with the regulations but once you get past the downstairs toilet there are a set of steps to negotiate, which really negates the planning of the toilet and front access!

Access for all should be a key consideration for new-build houses.  Properties that are adapted for wheelchairs can fetch a premium as they are few and far between.  We recently experienced two major leaks in our house and it was suggested that we move out and rent for a couple of months to allow the builders to repair the property.  I am a wheelchair user and the nearest adapted rental property that we could find was 25 miles away which was an impossible option with family commitments.

The issue is highlighted by the recent problems with ‘bed blocking’ in hospitals; partly attributed to some elderly patients being unable to return to their homes, which have become unsuitable for their needs.  This can result in elderly patients being placed in nursing homes, miles away from the support of family and friends.

Many elderly people lose their mobility and need to rely on wheelchairs or walkers to move around. To move house can be an extremely stressful event in the life of an older person; therefore if new build properties are designed for all, to include the needs of the less mobile, this will enable them to stay independent for longer, which will in turn lessen the pressures on the looming housing crisis.

There are several basic factors that should be considered when building a new property to allow someone to stay independent in their property for longer.

Ramped, level access and level thresholds for all doors and widened doorways, to accommodate wheelchairs, should be incorporated where possible.  The installation of a wet room ensures that a bathroom is easy to adapt with the addition of a shower seat and grab rails. Installing toilets to a reasonable height, not too low, can make it easier and safer to get on and off the loo as you get older.  Staircases should have a deep steps and hand rails for maximum support and safety.

Stair lifts or through floor lifts can make the difference to someone remaining independent but these can be added as the need arises  Grab rails, alarms, door chains and locks to keep residents safe, can all be added as they are required. Your local GP should be able to refer you to an Occupational Therapist who can assess your needs to ensure that you can remain as independent as possible in your own home.

If you do need to move or downsize as you get older, there are a number of possible housing options to consider:

Retirement Apartments:

Buying a property within a retirement development gives you the security and peace of mind of a house manager who oversees the running, maintenance and security of the development.  Different levels of care can be organised, depending on the property that has been purchased. Retirement developments offer the option of an active social life but if you prefer your own company, you have the privacy of your own home.

Sheltered housing:

There are many different types of sheltered housing schemes available. Each scheme usually has between 20 and 40 self contained flats or bungalows which are available to buy or rent. Many schemes have community areas and run social events for the residents. Some schemes will have a warden and all schemes should operate a 24 hour emergency help through an alarm system. Extra-care schemes are available which provide meals and personal care to allow you to stay in your own home for longer.

Cohousing developments:

Cohousing is a community which is founded and run by residents. It is a way of combating the loneliness and isolation that many people experience today and can be created using empty homes or by building new. Each resident has a self-contained and private home within a household but residents come together to share meals, activities and to manage their community. Households can usually sign up on a social housing, leasehold or freehold basis. Accessible housing within a cohousing community would however depend upon the individual development.

Further information and advice on housing needs for the elderly can be found at the following websites:

Housing Care  http://www.housingcare.org/housing-advice.aspx

Age UK  http://www.ageuk.org.uk/home-and-care/housing-choices/

First Stop  www.firststopcareadvice.org.uk.

UK Cohousing Network  http://www.cohousing.org.uk/

 

Author: Katherine Pyne, designed2enable.co.uk

 

Product News – Rollz Motion Rollator

 

Rollz-Purple-WheelchairRollz-Purple_RollatorRollz-Purple_Rollator

We’re delighted with the response to the Rollz Motion Rollator, which seems to answer all your mobility questions in one simple device. This Dutch design rollator combines a lightweight wheelchair with a rollator mobility device. It’s got everything we look for in a mobility aid – design fit for function, simplicity, good aesthetics and mobility enhancing features that our customers love.

changelogo_Model 2013

So lets start with using the Rollz Motion as a walking aid. It’s got adjustable ergonomic hand grips, light steering and curb assistance, which means that small steps, curbs and door entries are easy to manoeuvre. Its stylish design and colour range (orange, ice-blue, purple and cool grey) makes a statement all by itself – a great mix of sophisticated and bold colours. It also looks solid and dependable and would give confidence to anyone using it, especially in a busy place.

The additional wheelchair package allows the Rollz Motion to convert quickly and easily into a lightweight wheelchair, complete with foot rests, and that same light responsive steering and easy manoeuvrability. It’s ideal for people who have limited mobility and need different options depending on the situation.

We sent a Rollz Motion to Blue Badge Style for reviewing and they had nothing but good to say about it. You can see their review video here.

Rollz Motion is available through our online store. Check out the Rollz Motion colour range, specifications and great design here.

Guest Blog by Move It or Lose it!

MIOLI (203)

We’re often told we have to exercise more and yet just the word can put people off! But what about the people who would like to exercise but can’t? The ones the fitness magazines with their six-packs and perfectly toned bodies often overlook? Those with disabilities and conditions which make getting out of bed, washed and dressed seem like running a marathon?

I’m used to trying to persuade the ‘reluctant’ to exercise – I was a secondary school PE teacher! Now I’m teaching people who would love to exercise but think they can’t, or have problems which prevent them from accessing traditional forms of exercise.

After retraining to teach exercise for older people and those with disabilities, I soon realised that all the theory in the world counts for nothing if people don’t enjoy themselves. Coming along to a class, especially when you’re fearful of what to expect or of doing more harm than good, is a giant leap of faith, so creating an atmosphere of inclusivity and warmth is vital. Then you can start to focus on doing exercises which will help with everyday life.

 

MIOLI (202)

So, how did it all begin? Well I began to set up classes in the West Midlands for older people and those with health problems. I specialise in chair-based exercise which is ideal for less mobile people as they’re still able to join in and improve their fitness. But, key to my success, is making the routines so much fun that they don’t even realise they’re exercising.

Everyone who came to my classes couldn’t believe how much they enjoyed themselves and how much they could improve just by working out in chair! They were desperate to continue the exercises by working out at home too. So, I was persuaded to make a DVD of the exercises. They helped with the choice of music, got involved with the filming and they even came up with the name –Move it or Lose it!  It was vital to make the exercise routines safe, enjoyable, effective and accessible to everyone whatever their ability. Our DVDs are made by real people for real people and all endorsed by The Centre for Healthy Ageing Research (at the University of Birmingham).

Despite the success of all 5 of my DVDs and the amazing customer feedback I get, I know nothing can compare to a class! The benefits of working out in a group are endless – the camaraderie, friendship, motivation and support they all offer one another is fantastic! Each class becomes a little community, which is so lovely to see when all you hear in the press is the loneliness and social isolation that many older adults face in today’s society.

I know there’s still a desperate need for more classes across the UK, so I’ve set my sights on spreading the magic of Move it or Lose it! into more local communities. I get countless letters and emails from customers asking where their local classes are. So, with the Centre for Healthy Ageing Research, we’re now training more people and translating the latest research ensuring our Chair-based exercise instructors are part of a highly respected network. We’re looking for more people who are passionate about helping older adults to stay fit for life! Empathy, humour and patience are all a must! But, it’s the most rewarding job, seeing people who think they can’t do something actually achieve success so they can live life to the full.

Find out more about Move it or Lose it! at www.moveitorloseit.co.uk/careers or call 0800 612 7785.

By Julie Robinson, Move it or Lose it!

To Help Or Not To Help? – Offering Assistance To Someone Elderly or Disabled

 iStock_000017225406Small

My teenage daughter has grown up with a mother with a disability and is therefore always ready to help me when I am struggling or find a physical situation particularly challenging.  I guess she is tuned in to recognising when I need help.

I am always proud of her but particularly so recently.  We had parked outside our local farm shop and she had gone in to the shop on an errand to get a few provisions for me. She has been doing this since she was 5 years old and I always justified it by hoping that it taught her certain life skills such as responsibility,  listening to instructions and to watch that she gets the right change!

She took longer than usual and then an elderly lady who was stooped over and walking with the aid of two walking sticks, came out of the shop with her shopping, which was carried by a shop assistant.  When my daughter finally appeared, she got in the car, apologising for the delay and explained that she had done the shopping for the elderly lady. She had seen the lady trying to push a trolley whilst managing her walking sticks and she appeared to be struggling.  There were several adults in the shop and a two shop assistants but no-one had offered to assist her.  So my daughter put herself forward and offered her help, which was gladly taken.  The lady had been very grateful of her help and kept expressing her thanks by saying “Bless you”.  My daughter got huge satisfaction from being able to help her and to have made a difference to someone’s day.

This experience made us both wonder why people are hesitant to help someone that they can see may be struggling?  Perhaps people are apprehensive to offer to help in case, somehow, they offend the person? Perhaps they see it as an intrusion, or are awkward with disability or maybe people are just to busy and wrapped up in their own lives that they don’t even see it?

From my own perspective, I really appreciate it when someone offers to help me.  I am an independent wheelchair user and have to dismantle my wheelchair and then lift it across me onto the passenger seat when I want to go out in my car.  I do have a system for doing this, which can be tricky if people want to help but I am always very grateful for assistance when it comes to the final lift to get the frame across onto the other seat.

I have always found that people are really willing to help when I ask for assistance, which is usually when I am out shopping and I need help getting something from the top shelf.  Sometimes, I am offered help and may not really need it but accept it anyway as I don’t want to discourage them from offering help to someone who might really need it on another occasion.

So in future, if you see someone who might be in need of a little assistance, your offer of help may be appreciated. They can always decline but it is good to look out for others and you may get that feel-good feeling from knowing you have made a difference to someone else’s day.

 

By Katherine Pyne

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meditation For Pain Relief

image: size-isnt-everything.co.uk

image: size-isnt-everything.co.uk

Meditation has been around since ancient times, but it has taken on new significance in modern life, as a practical antidote for stress, anxiety and the pressures of everyday living.

Meditation has also been proven to alleviate physical pain, through the relaxation of the mind, which shows that our thoughts can have more of an impact on us than we ever suspected!

One perk of using meditation as a tool for pain relief, is that there are no negative side effects. Unlike drugs, meditation has only positive knock-on effects. Calm mind, calm body. Calm body, better sleep. Better sleep, better mood. Better mood, better for you and everyone you deal with on a daily basis…

Another perk is that meditation teaches our body how to turn off the fight or flight response, which is automatically triggered when you detect pain. Upon feeling pain, our body goes into overdrive and directs all its energy to fleeing the source of pain. Cue racing heart, anxiety, inability to sleep, inability to focus. Through meditating on a regular basis, when pain arises, you are able to calm your body, breathe into the discomfort, and soothe the nervous system that is so shaken and exhausted. A big deep breath will do wonders.

You will learn to turn your mind from the pain to other, more positive things. Pain and physical discomfort can be incredibly hard to ignore or distract yourself from, which is where mindfulness meditation can be of use. Feelings of pain could be not only physical, but also mental and emotional, and the three may well be intrinsically linked. By practising mindfulness meditation, you begin to slow your heartbeat, take long, slow breaths and observe the sounds, smells, sensations around you. Feel the warmth on your eyelids from the sun, the cushion beneath you and how you are supported, the wafting of bread baking in the oven, the sound of birds outside, cars driving past…. it will amaze you what happens when you stop trying to distract yourself and just observe your surroundings through your senses.

Thoughts and feelings will pop up all the time, especially at first. Try not to get angry, or frustrated. Instead, just recognise the thought or the discomfort, let it come and go like a wave, but try not to assign meaning to the thought or the discomfort. Thoughts are just thoughts, until you assign them a meaning. Once they have a meaning, they have a power over your emotions.

Meditation doesn’t have to be hard, or confusing, or a big time commitment. It will, one day, become something you look forward to, as a little time out of your day to ground yourself, check in, calm yourself down or soothe your discomfort.

To get you started, here are a few resources that we have found helpful in forming a regular meditation practice:

This Daily Telegraph article discusses a study on the use of meditation for pain relief.

Headspace is a great website (also an app that you can download) for busy people, described as ‘meditation made relevant for you’. They have an introductory ‘Take10′ course, consisting of ten days of ten minute meditations.

www.getsomeheadspace.com

The Chopra Center, by Deepak Chopra, runs free 21 Day Courses quite regularly, on topics such as ‘Desire and Destiny’, or ‘Finding your Flow’. The meditations are generally about 20 minutes long. The Chopra Center also offers a free ’8 Weeks To Happiness’ meditation course. You can find out here:

www.chopracentermeditation.com

If you can’t be bothered with computers and recordings, you can just sit quietly for as little as 5 minutes a day, focus on breathing in and out, let the thoughts come and go but always come back to the breath. You could visualise waves going in and out, pushing back as you breathe in, and crashing onto the shore as you breathe out.

Simply the knowledge that you have some control over your pain and your reaction to it, is, in itself, effective in dispelling anxiety.

The most important thing to know is that there is no wrong way to meditate. Explore and find a way that works for you.

Best of all, its free!

 

 

 

 

Product News – Stylish Walking Sticks from Sabi

Stylish walking sticks

designed2enable is the UK sales agent for Sabi Health and Wellness Products.

The design philosophy behind Sabi is very similar to our own – they believe that people’s imperfections are what make them beautiful and that intelligently designed products can help us embrace our vulnerabilities and feel happy about doing daily tasks that may have grown challenging or mundane.

Sabi’s range of Scandinavian inspired ROAM walking sticks are the perfect fashion accessory; the handles are ergonomically designed, whilst the sturdy, non adjustable shaft of the sticks are made from high strength bicycle grade aluminum.

Sabi ROAM walking sticks come in three different styles; the Luxe, Classic and Sport, available in a range of colours and sizes.

Read more about Sabi Roam walking sticks  here

 

 

Daily Living: The Emotional Impact of Design

Accidents, trauma and the on-set of old age can be debilitating and life changing. Many things become a compromise; the clothes you can wear, the way you design your home and
the impression you make as you enter a room. These all have a profound impact on how you feel about yourself and subsequently how you are perceived by others.

designed2enable were recently featured in Empower Magazine on the emotional impact of design.

You can read the full article here:
independent living editorial – Empower