Please help me shop for a wheelchair. I’ve poked around on the Intrawebs, but most of the information about models and options I’ve found seems to be based on the assumption the buyer knows what she/he wants in a chair.
So, how does one figure out what kind of wheelchair one needs? I don’t know which of the following details will help with deciding which model to buy, but here goes:
The user wants to propel the chair by hand, that is, rolling the wheels using the circular bar attached to the wheels. If the user self-propels the chair, then the “attendant’s handles” (is that what they’re called?) for pushing/steering can be omitted. Yes?
The user has good balance and doesn’t want high arm-rests. Low-profile ones are preferred.
The user wants to be able to prop up one leg and support it on a “calf rest” (not a footrest).
The user wants to be sit low enough to the ground to be able to put one foot flat on the floor, when desired. How does one measure a chair (the user?) for this?
The user is not overweight.
The user is not necessarily looking for a “sport” wheelchair, but will definitely consider one if that’s the best fit. But do sport chairs come with foot/leg rests?
The user wants a chair that can be folded, so it can fit in a car trunk.
Is an adjustable back rest/support available on styles other than the fully reclinable models? Is it advisable to have one?
From having tried (cheap) rented chairs, the sling-style seats do not provide the user with enough support, resulting in a back ache after use. What kind of seat gives proper support?
Some sort of under-seat tote/storage would be very useful. Is that available?
Is a seat belt advisable for any chair user, or just ones with muscle weakness/balance problems?
What other factors need to be considered when shopping for a wheelchair?
Thanks in advance!