Let’s go to the beach!
Enjoy real beach holidays with these wheelchairs
The summer is in full swing! Holidays, friends, sun, terraces, Aperol Spritz… but maybe this year you are thinking on getting a little tan and breathing pure sea breeze? Good idea! Let’s go to the beach!
There are many wheelchairs on the market, they vary in different brands and countries, but their function is practically the same throughout the world: to enjoy the beach 😊
Before diving into the beach wheelchair world, you have to decide what you need it for. Do you want to go bathing in the sea, or do you just want to soak up the sun? Maybe you’d also like to race your cousin to see who gets first to the ice cream truck? Different activities call for different wheelchairs. Here we have selected some of the most interesting products for your consideration. At the end of the article, you will find some websites where to buy or rent them in Switzerland and nearby countries.
These wheelchairs can go through sand and water. Being amphibious, stable and comfortable, they facilitate your accessibility to both the beach and the sea. User @Tulipe recently posted some images of her husband Felix enjoying the French Mediterranean in this model.
Like most beach wheelchairs, amphibious wheelchairs are characterized by their very large wheels which prevent the chairs from sinking into the sand. Wheelchairs of some brands are even floatable so that you can enjoy a bath in the sea and not just stay in the shallow water. Certain models like the well-known Hippocampe even allow users to push themselves through sand and water.
Like the name suggests, these wheelchairs are made of PVC, the world’s third-most widely produced synthetic plastic polymer. PVC is a comparatively light and cheap material, making PVC wheelchairs more affordable than many other beach wheelchairs.
This kind of wheelchair has two large wheels in the front and two smaller wheels in the rear which allow better steering. Some also have four large wheels instead, making mobility on sand easier. Usually these wheelchairs can be conveniently dissembled into three pieces for easy storage.
Recently, these wheelchairs have been updated to a more durable and comfortable version. They even come with a colorful umbrella to protect you from the sun 😊
These wheelchairs usually have a reclining seat and a joy stick. They give you more independence as they’re motorized. You can simply go as you please and access the beach with ease. In fact, they are the most expensive beach wheelchairs. However, if you like to go to the beach frequently, maybe it’s worth the investment. As an example, you might want to check out the Swiss model JST Multidrive which was recently mentioned in an article about accessible beach holidays in the Coop magazine.
Finally, let’s look at the Tumboroller: a wheelchair as well as a sunbed. It is an amphibious wheelchair which can be used for inside and outside the water. In addition, it allows you to lie down as flat as 180° to enjoy a proper sunbath.
The Tumboroller is designed to be simple and lightweight so that it can be easily operated by another person when you need to access the beach or the water. Cheaper than many other chairs on the market, it is one of the most used beach wheelchairs.
You have a manual wheelchair and don’t want to buy a specific beach chair? Then you might consider Freedom Trax. It is a manual wheelchair accessory that allows you to have a good time at the beach without getting out of your wheelchair. According to a review on SpinalCord.com, all you do is to roll right on up onto the track-lined platform, grab the handheld joystick and go. You can’t go into the water with it, but it does drive smoothly through the thickest sand, thanks to its tank-like tracks.
If you want to buy or rent a beach wheelchair in Switzerland or a nearby country, you may find more information on these websites:
- Booklet by the Cerebral Foundation (based in Switzerland)
- Booklet by the Swiss Paraplegics Association
- Orthotec (based in Switzerland)
- JST Multidrive (based in Switzerland)
- cadWeazle (based in Germany)
- Iwal officina ingegnere (based in Germany)
- AccessRec (based in the USA and in France)
- Vipamat (based in France)
- Super-piscine.com (based in France)
General information on various beach wheelchairs and product comparisons are available with these links:
Now with such a choice of cool wheelchairs, there are no excuses to stay at home or at the beach bar for your summer holidays 😉
Do you have experiences with one of the above wheelchair models? Do you know about other useful products for the beach? Please share with us!