Remember to always lock your brakes when around inclines and declines and when you are transferring from your wheelchair to another location, such as a chair or bed. Any sudden unexpected movements during these activities may result in a painful fall that may result in injury.
Never attempt to navigate steep slopes alone without knowing your capabilities. Practice with a caregiver or healthcare professional to find out if you are strong enough to complete this task.
Do what you can to make the wheelchair more visible to the public, such as decorating the chair with bright colors or using reflectors at night time. This reduces the risk of a possible collision with both people and vehicles
Never reach for an object if you have to move to the edge of the seat to reach it. In addition to this, do not reach for an object between your legs. These activities may cause you to fall out of your chair and on to the floor. Position your chair beside the object and reach over the side, if possible.
Do not try to maneuver your wheelchair onto a curb or up a stairway. Get another person to help you get over the curb or, if necessary, search for an alternative route, such as a handicap ramp or elevator to get to a higher level
if you are learning, keep your fingernails trimmed short so they are less likely to tear. You may want to wear fingerless gloves, such as weightlifting gloves, to protect your hands from both dirt and injury.
To go forwards, reach backwards and grip the the wheels as far back as you can. Push the wheels forward by keeping hold of the rims and moving them in a forwards direction.
Reach forwards and grip the wheels, and push them backwards. Be careful, as the little wheels at the front will need to swivel round. Don’t forget to look behind you!
Hold the right wheel still, and push the left wheel forwards, Hold the left wheel still, and push the right wheel forwards to turn right and left.
Grip the rims and use friction to slow them down. Pinch the push rim between your thumb and the side of the first joint of your index finger. If the rims are wet, pinch the tire instead. Use caution, as this friction creates heat that can burn your hands if you are on a slope or stopping suddenly.
Negotiating bumps is tricky initially so try avoiding them as far as possible over time they can be negotiated with practice.