Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Question from a reader

phmooney said...

I'm about to to start the process of jousting
with my company insurance to get an iBot, which
I test drove and fell in love with. I've always
used a manual (59 years) but my shoulders have
begun bothering me, so . . . .
Anyway, I was impressed with the Dragon line, but
as I toured their website, I realized that it
doesn't seem to climb stairs or even curbs. Am
I missing something? The Dragon's not an option
for me; I don't meet the weight max (at 200, I'm
50 pounds under the iBot, though), but I am curious
about the curb/stair capability for the Dragon, if any.

December 24, 2007 9:58 PM

59 years in a manual, I'm surprised your arms
haven't fallen off. :D

The Dragon does not climb stairs. As far as I know,
the iBOT is the only chair that climbs stairs. Since
you did a test drive, you are familiar with the iBOT
stair climbing limitations. Also, if you are like me,
as well as many other iBOTters, you might not really
use the stair function much, because it's limitted and
unnerving. For me, doing the stair function with the
rep right there wasn't all that scary. Doing it without
the rep there is something I haven't been able to bring
myself to do. Plus, as I wrote in a previous blog entry,
there are too many limitations. For me, the iBOT's
stair function is pretty much useless.

One feature the Dragon has that the iBOT doesn't is that
it can lower the person to the floor. I think this is a
very important feature for a young kid. Another feature
the Dragon has that the iBOT doesn't is that it can move
the user into a standing position. By standing, I mean
actually standing, not just elevating. This is also an
important feature because it helps keeps bones strong.

As for curb climbing, I asked Liam's dad about that. He
said it does go up and down curbs. I don't know details
on this though such as the height it can handle. Perhaps
if Liam's parents read this, they can answer this question.

I think that the iBOT is better for adults and the Dragon
is better for kids (in general of course). The iBOT isn't
even available for kids. I've been thinking about how
different my childhood would have been if I would have
had a Dragon. The Dragon wasn't available back then.
I'm really glad it's available now. Sad though that
a lot of kids who could benefit from having one can't have
one due to insurance not allowing it and/or parents being
unaware of it and/or not having the finances to purchase one.

It seems to me that the technology to build a chair even
more awesome than the iBOT is there. I hope we see some
really great chairs becoming available in the near future.
Although.... I don't know how I'll be able to afford to
buy one.

Okay, rambling over. Best wishes to you in getting your
insurance to purchase an iBOT for you. I do know that
some insurance companies are paying for at least part
of it for some people. I'll keep my fingers crossed
for you! Please let me know what happens.


phmooney said...

How do I get to your blog entry about climbing stairs?


Wheelchair Revolution! said...

Here's a link for you:
Stair Function is Useless

Like I said in the blog entry, if I had someone who was with me a lot of the time, they could be trained on stair function so that they could assist me up and down stairs. The only person who is with me frequently is my daughter and although she is only 10, she could do it as it doesn't require strength. However... I'm not real comfortable with her doing it. I think in a few years I'll feel like she's responsible enough to do it.

As for doing it by myself, there absolutely has to be a railing and I'm finding that there often is no railing.

Wheelchair Revolution! said...

phmooney, you might want to read this entry as well:
Does the iBOT my neighbor's homes accessible?

Stephanie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.