To improve the mobility and autonomy of users of manual wheelchairs, Lille startup Apppur has designed Drift, a braking system adapted to this means of transport.
This is a reality experienced by all users of manual wheelchairs. To slow down the speed of their means of transport, they must use their hands to grasp the hoop, a handrail attached to the wheel of the chair. A challenge when it comes to tackling a descent or when the ground is wet. Above all, this process is a source of discomfort because it causes burning and requires significant effort from the upper body. It is based on this observation that startup Appur has invented a braking system that allows you to slow down without injuring yourself.
This Wednesday, January 25th, Tech&Co general manager d’Eppur, Lancelot Durand, explains, “The solution we’ve developed is called Drift. It’s a pair of wheels that can be installed on any manual wheelchair and Which replaces the original wheels.”
The braking system is integrated into the hub attached to the wheel. To activate it, the user must pull slightly on the wheelchair handrail, which remains fixed at the rear. This solution also has the advantage of dividing the required effort by five, says Lancelot Durand.
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For good reason, according to Appur, 35% of manual wheelchair users suffer a musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) of the shoulder six months after use. Especially due to the fact that they have to propel themselves or they are forced to move their chair at times.
According to the general manager of Appur, many of the startup’s customers are complete or incomplete quadriplegics. And these individuals usually have difficulty holding their hands. However, Lancelot Durand says, “All these people want to be in a manual wheelchair and don’t want to go electric. We’re offering them a solution that might help some of them.”