The Development Of An Instrumented Wheelchair Propulsion Testing And Training Device

Joseph Klaesner1, Kerri Morgan2, David Gray2
Program in Physical Therapy1, Program in Occupational Therapy2, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO


This paper describes an instrumented wheelchair dynamometer system, the WheelMill System (WMS), developed for testing and training manual wheelchair users. Three participants wheeled on the WMS, over a tile surface and up two different slopes with the Smartwheel to compare speed and forces. The WMS reasonably simulated propulsion over a tile floor. For the slopes, the speed oscillated over a greater range and was slower, and the measured peak forces were higher. The WMS may have several research and clinical applications, though additional studies on a greater and more diverse population are needed.