Archive for February, 2012

Training and Test week Tenerife

Wednesday, February 29th, 2012

After spending the last few days almost exclusively with my hobby as office communication specialist (make phone calls, pay invoices, scan, hole, file or shred documents, ok, everything is occupational therapy as well) I’m ready to continue now:

The hotel Mar y Sol in the south of Tenerife is one the most known wheelchair hotels.

Why it necessarily had to be built on top of a hill can only be explained so that according to someone’s opinion the wheelchair pusher should exercise a little bit as well.

Many “fresh wheelers” spend their first holiday there, because with the medical supply store “Lero” next door offering 24 hrs nursing services as well and renting out virtually all needed equipment it is possible to book the carefree package. At the same time you will never hear the word “patient” from the nurses, one is referred to as guest, and this is how one is treated. The nursing costs can be settled with the German nursing insurance, depending on the care level. The “pain providers“ from the physiotherapy facility „Terralava“ torture with additional charge on German prescription as well. Plenty of electric wheelchairs and scooters are present, as one would like to go down to the handicapped beach as well (see older blogpost).

The hotel has 2 pools, one of them heated to 32° C.
A “lifeguard” helps with the transfer to the chair of a pool lifter and winds one down as if he would water a ship’s boat. With a little bit of luck he also helps to come out of the pool again ;-)

Almost all guests are repeaters, some overwinter there for 3 months, so that the stay is always a bit like a class reunion, you know each other…

It is a bit crazy if the wheelers stand in each other’s way at the buffet. You always find a way very relaxed and without stress. There is no fight at the buffet, on the contrary you help each other according to your handicap.

There is also animation and some program in the evenings, but I am missing the classic “club dance”.
The tradition of 1-sheet-bingo and 10-question-quiz for a bottle of sparkling wine is held high here.

This time I was there for the 4th time.

On the day of arrival I heard something about a gym…, did I miss something???

When I was there last year there was already knocking and hammering in the side building. They have built a sports hall (and not a small one!), without asking me, what a cheek!!!

I suspected the worst:

Would I have to be involved in sporting activities, although I actually travelled there for a Minitrac-tractor tyres-test week?

To be continued…

Click on tag “Tenerife” to view older blogposts!

Translator BL

 

Back from Tenerife!

Friday, February 24th, 2012

Unfortunately the Minitrac has not survived the flight undamaged again!

Apart from that I have collected enough material for new stories, more to come shortly.

Wheelchair Tuning Part XXX (Competitor)

Sunday, February 12th, 2012

That standard wheelchairs, snow and sand are not the best friends is not really the insight of the day.

The low budget mountainbike wheelchair tyres
(see older blog post),

constructed by myself are indeed a big relief for me on bad ground conditions, but the small front tyres are for sand and snow by far the worst solution.

Well, with some special skating wheels as front tyres you might be able to illuminate the snow, but you are not moving any faster anyhow.

Actually I don’t understand it, but the engineers at the wheelchair companies don’t seem to know neither snow nor sand. Even after longer consideration I couldn’t think of any country which would not have at least one of it. Probably they live on trees, otherwise there would be adequate summer and winter equipment for each wheelchair as a standard.
Some day I will build in old MacGyver manner out of an inflatable physiotherapy ball and a hand fan a mobile mounting set with which my rolling vehicle turns into a ground-independent hovercraft wheelchair ;-)

Until I get there I continue combing through the technical aids scene to see what the colleagues are developing.

I am living in the city, but last year even my hometown Frankfurt was full of snow.

As formerly alpine skiing obsessed who was skiing with 2 meter skis in the Alps still in 2007 (no carving ski in children’s length) I already thought several times to cut my 2 cellar decoration skis in homeopathic pieces and screw them to my wheelchair instead of the front tyres to be able to leave my flat in last year’s snow chaos.

A seating test in a monoski on a fair was quite nice, and I was extremely surprised how stable I was sitting in it, until I asked my friend behind me if he was standing on the ski?

He said yes, took off his foot, I fell over, and the project monoski was postponed for the time being…!!!

Who was it, a Swiss man…!!!

When I read the post of a wheelchair hotel in Oberstdorf known to me I was immediately impressed.
Patrick Mayer, what a coincidence, a wheeler himself from Switzerland, who certainly has much more test snow than me each year, developed the Wheel Blades.
The

www.wheelblades.ch


are small blades which can be clamped with an iron clip anytime easily (even for quadriplegics) to the front tyres of the wheelchair.
The front tyres remain on the wheelchair!!! The binding is individually adjustable.

There was a real expert at work. Look at the Video,
he rolls down a flat ski-slope with these things on his wheelchair. The envy factor increases, ok I grant it to him.
He has even added slide rails to the blades so that they keep the track on the slope. Excellent, chapeau!!!

The Wheel Blades can be ordered in advance from October 2012, I will do it.
To anticipate anything, they might get paid by the employer’s accident insurance at best, or you have a good lawyer at the social court!!!

I haven’t heard anything yet about test rides in the snow board half pipe, and the snow and waterski suitability still has to be proved ;-)

Translator BL

 

New translations available!

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

 

Click on the picture to view category

Holiday

Now all 39 blog posts in English available

Wheelchair Tuning Part XXVIII Minitrac

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

对不起,此内容只适用于EnglishDeutsch

Technical Aids Tips und Tricks XLIX

Saturday, February 4th, 2012

I heard that disabled parking permits can virtually vanish into thin air and can’t be found in the car anymore.

They possibly fall into black holes. Partial drifts in the space-time continuum are nothing unusual anyway.

Everybody knows it when you are looking for something, can’t find it, and suddenly it is back again.

As rumour has it, the permits are also stolen at night by SUV and cabriolet driving pedestrians.
But there is also the variant that the permit has never left the vehicle.

The permit is not gone, you just don’t see it any more…!!!

The permits are laminated in plastic foil and therefore quite slippery. Apply the brakes forcefully a couple of times, and the parking permit vanishes rapidly between front screen and dashboard like in a letter box.

Then a good fisherman or the new application for the VIP permit is required!!!
I can’t advise the extraction of the car dashboard to anyone, something is always creaking afterwards.

It’s absolutely clear that most of the people with walking disability have fixed their parking permits in their cars in some way.

But if you are regularly taken along by different people in their cars the parking permit should stay removable and can’t be fixed with a “final solution”.

OK…, it could…!!!

As “final solution” I recommend to adhere the permit to the windscreen with a special glue which hardens under ultraviolet light (the sun will help), e.g. Loctite 30xx.

A theft of the parking permit is only possible including the screen then. ;-)

If I am on the road with a friend in his car, I made the experience that the dashboard jump for my permit is nothing unusual.

The easiest way is to stick some self-adhesive rubber pads or non-slip mat underneath the permit, or to put it like in the picture below in a thick cover.

The non-slip mat is available in the do-it-yourself store around the corner in car accessories or from the company Dycem, (see older blogposts Technical Aids for Quadriplegics Part I und Part IV), who makes very good technical aids which I have tested myself.

This special English disabled parking disc is good for maximum 3 hours parking, presumably like in Germany in restricted parking zones, is new to me.

I am currently thinking about illuminating my disabled parking permit with a LED matrix as you can see on television if a new CD is presented.

Click on tag “Handicap Parking to read other nice stories! ;-)

Translator BL