What is a transport chair and who should use it?

Posted by Healthquest on 23rd Jul 2022

What is a transport chair?

A transport chair is a type of mobility device to support your full body weight and prevent injury. At HealthQuest, we provide a wide range of mobility aids equipment and safety accessories for seniors and people with disability.

While at a glance it looks like a wheelchair, a transport chair has different uses that make it ideal for certain situations and individuals.

One of the things that make transport chairs different from wheelchairs is their more lightweight and portable framework. Also, they are designed to be propelled by a companion or attendant.

Who should use a transport chair?

  • You can still walk, with or without a walker/roller, but tire quickly.
  • You only need a mobility device temporarily after recovering from a surgery or injury.
  • You cannot walk long distances.
  • You have a companion to propel you.

Since transport chairs are lightweight and lack paddings and armrests, they are meant for temporary use. So if you need to sit for lengthy periods of time or throughout the day, a wheelchair is a much better option. However, it’s not uncommon for wheelchair users to also have transport chairs.

Because transport chairs are easy to fold and lighter than wheelchairs, they are ideal if you travel frequently.

Why should you get a transport chair?

If you like going to restaurants, theaters, museums and other places without a lot of space, it’s nice to have a transport chair with a narrower dimension that makes it easier to maneuver through passageways. This is why even those who already have wheelchairs feel the need to also purchase transport chairs.

What to look for in a transport chair?

The right transport chair depends on several factors, including your size and weight, how frequently you travel, and features you prefer (for example, swing-away footrests vs. elevating leg rests).

Read this guide that explains what to look for in a transport chair.

Size. The ideal backside width of your transport chair should be 1-2 inches wider than your back to ensure comfortable seating. These chairs generally come in three standard sizes: narrow which has a 16-17 inch wide seat; medium which has an 18-20 inch wide seat; and wide which has over 22-inch wide seat.

Weight capacity. The size of transport chairs determines their weight capacity. For instance, narrow chairs typically support 120 lbs. and under, medium chairs support up to 300 lbs. while heavy-duty transport chairs support between 300 lbs. and 500 lbs. Make sure that you check the product’s weight capacity before purchasing.

Frequency of use. Do you like to travel and visit places like restaurants and cinemas? If you think you’ll use your transport chair regularly, opt for something that offers customizable features to ensure your comfort and is made of heavy-duty materials. But if you don’t see it as your primary mobility aid, an inexpensive one can work just fine.

Additional features. Most transport chairs come with swing-away footrests. But if you’re looking for additional comfort, you may want to consider products with removable footrests that you can replace with elevating foot rails that allow you to position your legs to the most comfortable angle.

Where to buy a transport chair?

Mobility devices like transport chairs will not just improve your quality of life but also give you some degree of independence. For this reason, make sure that you buy from a reputable medical supply store like HealthQuest which carries high-quality brands.

As a one-stop shop for mobility devices, recliners and safety accessories to improve the quality of life of people with mobility issues, HealthQuest can help you get the right medical equipment. For assistance or inquiries, please call or text us at 916-238-1700.

You can also check out our list of products with a brief description.