The All-Terrain, Hemiplegic Wheelchair Engineered at MIT

For stroke victims, amputees, or others looking for a hemiplegic wheelchair, a version of the Freedom Chair that can be self-propelled using only one side of the body: One arm and one leg.

Finally: A hemiplegic wheelchair capable of matching your hunger for adventure. Whether that adventure looks like a trip through the woods, through the park, through an obstacle course race, or through some other terrain altogether, GRIT Freedom Chair is ready for you.

How’s it work?

The standard Freedom Chair features two independent drivetrains—riders push their left lever to propel the left wheel and the right lever to propel the right wheel. However, we realize that this isn’t always an option. The all-terrain hemiplegic wheelchair (we call it the “Hemi”) has its drivetrains connected beneath the chair—whether you’re right-side strong or left-side strong, you can engage that lever to propel the entire chair (both rear wheels) forward.

Who uses the Hemi?

This off-road, hemiplegic wheelchair has been a tremendously successful solution for stroke victims and amputees, but there are an array of challenges that make this chair ideal. One of our riders in the Boston area has cerebral palsy that affects three of his limbs—with the Hemi and a little help from a pusher, he can get out into the woods and adventure.

Above, check out Norm, who put together this awesome video of him using the Hemi. Norm has one-sided paralysis as the result of a stroke. He uses the GRIT Freedom Chair to get outside on beautiful trails in New England. With assistance, Norm is able to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors with his family!

“Before my second birthday, I was diagnosed with cerebral palsy (CP). There are many different types and severities of CP; my type affects my legs and left arm, leaving me with poor balance and limited use of my arm.”    —James   James is an exercise enthusiast, motivational speaker, and founder of  Handi Capable Fitness.  In addition to Spartan Races, James also uses his GRIT Freedom Chair to explore local trails with friends.

“Before my second birthday, I was diagnosed with cerebral palsy (CP). There are many different types and severities of CP; my type affects my legs and left arm, leaving me with poor balance and limited use of my arm.”

—James

James is an exercise enthusiast, motivational speaker, and founder of Handi Capable Fitness. In addition to Spartan Races, James also uses his GRIT Freedom Chair to explore local trails with friends.

“I live in FL and have been using my “wheels” for several months practicing for our big adventure—we just got home Sunday from WA, OR, and CA. I used the my chair to put my tires in the Pacific Ocean (sea level), Oregon, to Mt. Rainier (at 10,500 feet above sea level), Washington, and through the redwoods in California. On occasion, I had help from my son and wife (occasionally our grandkids too) who would push me uphill, but my wheels made the adventure so much better Now back in FL going at it, 5 days a week.”    —Dan

“I live in FL and have been using my “wheels” for several months practicing for our big adventure—we just got home Sunday from WA, OR, and CA. I used the my chair to put my tires in the Pacific Ocean (sea level), Oregon, to Mt. Rainier (at 10,500 feet above sea level), Washington, and through the redwoods in California. On occasion, I had help from my son and wife (occasionally our grandkids too) who would push me uphill, but my wheels made the adventure so much better Now back in FL going at it, 5 days a week.”

—Dan


Benefits of GRIT’s off-road, hemiplegia wheelchair

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Reduced fatigue

The GRIT Freedom Chair is significantly easier to push than a regular wheelchair. The ergonomic lever drive uses large muscle groups to reduce fatigue and keep you adventuring longer. The gear ratio is easy to change with off-the-shelf bike parts, so you can adapt your GRIT Freedom Chair to match your changing strength and ability levels.

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Exercise

One lever propels both wheels simultaneously. With the second lever inserted, both wheels move forward in unison, so you can exercise your weaker side. Plus, you'll be having fun outdoors!