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Thread: New Wheelchair Automatically Senses 'Push' Required

  1. #1

    New Wheelchair Automatically Senses 'Push' Required

    Introduction of INDEPENDENCE(TM) iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair Revolutionizes Category With New Technology

    New Wheelchair Automatically Senses 'Push' Required,

    Increases Mobility of People With Disabilities

    WARREN, N.J., Jan. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Independence Technology, LLC, a Johnson & Johnson company, today announced the March availability of the INDEPENDENCE(TM) iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair. The iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair operates similarly to a conventional manual wheelchair, but uses proprietary technology to supplement user input power. To the user, the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair feels like a much lighter chair moving over a flat, smooth surface regardless of the terrain. Sensors and microprocessors provide motorized assistance, requiring much less effort from the user than required in a traditional manual wheelchair.

    To move with the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair, the user simply pushes the handrims as if propelling a standard manual wheelchair. The patented technology of the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair monitors both the user's input and the resulting motion, determining the appropriate level of additive power to provide a similar feel even when ascending or descending ramps or crossing resistive terrain such as grass or soft carpet. To the casual observer, there is little perceived difference when viewing the contemporarily designed iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair, compared to a regular manual wheelchair. To the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair user, however, there is a remarkable difference.

    Bodies Benefit from Reducing Stress and Strain of

    "Manual Wheelchair Syndrome"

    The iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair was developed to assist people with varying forms of mobility disorders ranging from arthritis, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy, paraplegia and tetraplegia, and may relieve and/or reduce the risk of "manual wheelchair syndrome," -- repetitive stress injuries, such as rotator cuff and carpal tunnel syndrome, which are common problems among manual wheelchair users. The iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair also provides an option for wheelchair users looking to sensibly protect and preserve upper body strength and function for years to come.

    "The iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair has the potential to allow users to get around their home, office or even outdoors safely, with much less strain or effort than in a manual wheelchair," stated Charles E. Levy, M.D., chief, PRMS, North Florida/South Georgia Veterans Health System. "For many, it even provides an attractive, meaningful alternative for the transition from manual to power chairs. By reducing muscular effort, heart rate and perceived exertion associated with 'wheeling,' the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair provides meaningful benefits for all users," Dr. Levy observed.

    Dr. Levy and colleagues tested the performance of the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair among eleven manual wheelchair users with a variety of medical conditions. Nine of 11 users in the study reported that the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair was easier to push on smooth surfaces and inclines compared to their manual chairs, and was thus preferable. The users anticipated that they would be more active in such a chair, with nine participants saying they would venture to new and different places in the community if they owned an iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair. The study tested elder manual wheelchair users (average age 70.5 plus or minus 7.8 years). Dr. Levy and his colleagues are preparing to conduct a larger, longer-term study to examine the effects of the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair. "I expect the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair will benefit wheelers across disability categories, regardless of age," states Dr. Levy.

    "The range of people with disabilities is expanding," said Rory Cooper Ph.D., chair and professor of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. "For those who realize they can't go as far as they want -- or even go anywhere at all -- assistive technology offers a viable solution. In addition, baby boomers, with their expectations of remaining physically active even while they lose physical capability, represent a tremendous audience for assistive technology."

    Innovative, Lightweight Technology

    Independence Technology gained the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair technology through the November 2002, acquisition of DeltaGlide, Inc. of

    Hamden, Conn. The iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair will retail for

    approximately $7,900, with a percentage of that cost expected to be

    covered by insurance.

    The iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair maintains most of the features of a manual wheelchair while combining advantages currently only available in larger, heavier power wheelchairs. The contemporary design of the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair incorporates an unobtrusive, built-in, under-the-seat system that provides the user with discreet power assistance. At approximately 55 pounds, the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair was designed for easy transport, with quick-release wheels, battery removal and fold-down seatback.

    Independence Technology: A Company with a Mission

    Created in 1995, and formally known as Independence Technology, LLC, a Johnson & Johnson company since 1999, the company mission is to develop products and technology applications that help people with disabilities live their lives with greater freedom. With this product, Johnson & Johnson extends its tradition of innovative health care service to a community of nearly six million people worldwide who use wheelchairs.

    In November, 2002, Independence Technology also received a unanimous recommendation for FDA approval from an expert independent advisory panel assembled by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to evaluate data for the company's INDEPENDENCE(TM) iBOT(TM) Mobility System. The iBOT(TM) Mobility System operates on rechargeable battery power and uses a complex system of sensors, gyroscopes and electronics to simulate balance, enabling users to climb and descend stairs, navigate variable terrain, ascend curbs and elevate, for extended periods, to a "standing" position. The company hopes to introduce the iBOT(TM) Mobility System in mid-2003.

    For additional information about the iGLIDE(TM) Manual Assist Wheelchair, the iBOT(TM) Mobility System and Independence Technology visit or .

  2. #2
    see, now that looks cool. i want one. definately looks better than the e-motion stuff.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    middle of nowhere
    Maybe they are better than e-motion but after 35 years pushing a manual and completely destroying my right arm and shoulder the e-motion has given me an unbelievable amount of freedom. Just going all day long in my small office constantly back and forth for files, phones etc. I can get my own coffee and "run" all day long in a 24 person suite that's carpeted, go to the courtrooms on different floors, bathrooms down the hall w/o totally exhausting myself, even the e-motion ones are awesome technology. I always thought that by pushing myself I was building strength.It's the convenience of a folding chair you stash behind the car seat with almost the easy mobility of a power chair.Any long time manual user should look into one of these types to get all the use you can out of your shoulders.. WR

  4. #4

    i'd like to know more

    about the there a website?
    how much did it cost?
    how long have you had it?
    is there any regular maintinence needed on it?
    how much heavier/wider than a regular manual is it?
    i use a quickie gpv now.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Argao, Cebu, Philippines
    This chair looks like a really good idea. It supplies he power needed vs. always supplying a fixed ratio. It will even power one side more than the when one wheel is on grass and the other not. I wonder if it will also do just that when rolling along a slanted sidewalk? I hate sidewalks that are sloped down toward the road...always pushing with one hand and braking with the other. It's a pain in the ass and severely limits how far I can go before my shoulder starts to ache.

    I really like the idea of this chair....and it's from our friends at J&J. Now about the price.....yeah, that will be another story.

    ~See you at the SCIWire-used-to-be-paralyzed Reunion ~

  6. #6
    This chair sounds pretty good, just what I am looking for. Trying to find information about this chair is proving to be quite difficult. Their website is pretty useless, it doesn't tell you anything. I can't even find anywhere that actually sells them. It's a pretty safe bet that I will have problems finding anything like that over here in the United Kingdom, can someone give me a bit more information on where this chair is sold and how much it is. I'm willing to bet it will cost several thousand £'s

    Alternatively, are there any other wheelchairs on the market that do the same thing?

  7. #7
    You can't find anything out about this chair because it is no longer on the market. It was taken off the market nearly 2 years ago because J&J decided they wanted to focus all their marketing efforts on the IBOT.

    There were a lot of problems with this chair too...very limited sizes and it have limited options. Weight wise and functionally it was similar to E-Motion wheels, but the latter has the advantage of being able to be used on a wide variety of different chairs.

    Last edited by SCI-Nurse; 07-05-2006 at 08:50 AM.

  8. #8
    Ironically, I have just had an e-mail from the company telling the exactly the same thing. I found some information about the e-motion Wheelchair. Having said that, the information was not very clear and I am actually wondering whether it is just an add-on that you can put on any manual wheelchair, rather than that the whole wheelchair.

  9. #9
    Just found some more information on e-motion. Doesn't look very quadriplegic friendly to me, typical! I would be interested to know how much it is, most of these websites won't tell you, I wonder why?

  10. #10
    E-Motion is about $6,000.00. I believe the web site is They add about 50 to 60 lbs. You might also want to check

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