Preliminary Findings of Two-Speed Wheel Impact on Shoulder Pain Now Available

Preliminary findings of a study that examined the effect of two-speed manual wheelchair wheels on shoulder pain among wheelchair users are now available for viewing on Magic Wheels' Web site.

Conducting the study were representatives of the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science in Baltimore; the Baltimore Veterans Administration Medical Center, Rehabilitation Research & Development Service; and Magic Wheels in Seattle.

Because manual wheelchair users rely on their shoulders and arms for an extraordinary number of daily activities — from transferring to propelling their chairs — up to 80 percent of current manual chair users experience shoulder pain, according to the two rehab facilities that participated in the study. The study sought to "investigate the impact of the new Magic Wheels two-gear manual wheelchair on shoulder pain in manual wheelchair users."

Magic Wheels are designed to minimize effort and maximize propulsion results by using two gears — one for normal environments, and another for difficult-to-navigate ones, including grass, gravel, door jambs and inclines. The gears are also designed to be easily shifted.

The preliminary report said, "Nine of 10 subjects reported a continuous decrease in shoulder pain during the initial four months… These preliminary findings indicate the potential for shoulder pain reduction with the use of Magic Wheels two-gear wheels due to reduced joint loading during daily mobility."

To see the preliminary findings, or for more information on Magic Wheels, go to Magic Wheels was presented the Innovation Award in Medtrade's New Product Pavilion in September.

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