Crashing wheelies

Pop that little wheelie and impress your friends. Hold it and they hold you in awe. Right up or down that small curb. Into your friend’s house. It’s a wheelchair maneuver that has its uses. Not everyone can do it. Not everyone should.

(The announcer says this next sentence with a low, authoritative voice.) “The perfectly executed wheelie gently lifts the casters off the surface whilst the rider glides the chair forward and over the obstacle.” The Keystone Kops version is somewhat different with an entirely different result.

About a week and a half ago I needed to traverse the tracks of a triple sliding patio door. Everything went wrong. I felt the casters rise and realized I didn’t have them under control. I hoped they would go back down but felt them continue to rise. Popping a wheelie was now crashing a wheelie. I know we were going over backward.

When the wheelchair flips, the rider needs to take precautions to avoid major injury. I slipped into tuck and roll mode and prepared to roll gently out the back as the chair landed. All went well until I actually landed – directly on the metal track. My form had been good, and the chair was indeed crossing the track with the casters in the air. Way in the air, but whatever. That forward motion was my undoing. “Ouhhhhh…”

I do wish to make a point, other than get your wheelies right every time. Even when we are being careful, things can go wrong. When they do, try to remember the proper form. But this is also a reminder to watch for things that can flip a wheelchair, slide a crutch, deceive any mobility device, or otherwise cause what we least expect. Misplaced throw rugs, toys left out, the dishwasher left open (yes, it happens), tracks too wide, curbs too high.

This isn’t just for wheelies or crutch users or people who can’t see. It’s for summer in flip flops, winter in boots, or baking cookies (which sound good about now). Things can and do go wrong. Try to avoid them; keep calm when they occur.

And by all means, don’t crash your wheelies.


12 thoughts on “Crashing wheelies

  1. I have a new chair and not used to it yet .. Have come out twice!!! Third time a pine cone thing got caught but managed a hand down and push back up which impressed friends!!! Oh yes and patio door frame I got stuck over … No going back or forward!!! So far no injuries just hurt pride!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Questions galore…
      What is your new chair? Color? Cushion?
      Pine cone thing? Like it stuck the wheels?
      Patio doors are dangerous in a wheelchair. They are common but are a definite hazard. Our last 3 homes all had them in the original plans, but we built them with French Doors. Definitely not something one would want to cross with any regularity. So don’t let them hurt your pride. 😎♿️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Progeo Joker.. Made from carbon fibre so very light and that it the difference as old chair was heavy … Black .. Roho cushion .. Not sure what happened with cone thing as it was dark .. My son in law found like a mini ramp thing online that goes over the patio door thing as it is in their home … See how that goes next visit .. Everything else about the chair I love as far more manageable and turns in own circle .. Just have to get used to it!!!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow I hope you are all better now! You are right there are so many things to be careful of. I have rugs down in my kitchen in front of the sink, stove and refrigerator and I am constantly tripping over them. You would think I’d remember they are there! Great advice about keeping calm too. BTW did you bake any cookies? 🙂


    1. Stephanae, I hit my back hard on the aluminum track, and it is still sore. But I collected Sandy in the worst way. She hit the wheelchair, the track, and the floor. Deep bruising, and she is still hurting. Thanks for caring. As I said in the Paraversary entry, this has been harder on her than me.

      Liked by 1 person

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