Rider Spotlight: Tim “Gator” Glassmire

Tim “Gator” Glassmire from the Space Coast area in Florida shares his story and how he found the GRIT Freedom Chair.

“In 1977, I took a short 40-foot fall and shattered both legs at the knee. I spent a nice 6-month stay at the local hospital getting put back together and was still told “you may never walk again.”

Well, I proved them wrong by not only walking, but hiking and doing all sorts of things that I maybe shouldn’t have done. And here I am, 42 years later, and can still walk.

Okay, so I can walk . . . a little bit. The ¾-mile walk from the hotel to our favorite restaurant in St. Augustine would take me five stops and almost an hour to cover. I realized it was time to admit I needed some help.

“Dented but not broken.”

I did a lot of research on “alternate mobility” and learned that way too many people like me (who are dented but not broken) take the easy way out with a powered chair. 

I talked to some nurses I know and they were all for the self-powered chairs. So, which one to get? That fall not only tore up my legs, but my right shoulder now has a tendency to just pop out of joint at certain angels. So many chairs, so many issues, and so many opportunities.

Researching all-terrain wheelchairs and finding the GRIT Freedom Chair.

One day I happened on a website with a three-wheeled chair. My first thought was that I would probably tip over and break something. I reviewed the information online and finally got on the phone with Mike at GRIT and had a few discussions.

I told him my story and also told him that I was a bit “more” than what the chair was rated for. We got down to business and even though I was ready to put the order in, Mike stood his ground and gave me my first target of getting below 310 lbs. before he could release the chair.

It took me a few weeks to drop from 340, but I was eventually able to call and announce I had made weight! The chair was put in the mail that day and I received it in about five days after that.

I could not have been happier with the whole process or the crew at GRIT.

Timothy Glassmire.jpg

They sent me toward my first hurdle with the weight loss. I have now put myself on a daily regimen to ride for exercise as well as use my bionic legs (the Freedom Chair) to do jobs, walks and—yes, go to my favorite pubs and restaurants.

The GRIT team has become a daily dose of reality and I have been invited by other riders to join them in a 5K race. I have never run, driven, or even watched a 5K race . . . this should be interesting.

Now, I have to blame Mike and the GRIT crew for one small item. I needed to make weight in order to get the chair. I got down to 295 and then something else happened. I added 2” to my chest, added 1 ½” to my biceps . . . and somehow, I added about 18 pounds! Maybe it’s muscle. I lost weight to get the chair and then I gained weight while using it. So, to all of you at GRIT, I am definitely your test subject for load testing.

Thanks to all of you guys for giving me my mobility back and I will see you out there rolling about the world.”

It's Spartan Time

It's Spartan Time

It is 6AM on the quiet edges of Boerne, TX. There’s a line of tail lights snaking into the dusty entrance of the Don Strange Ranch. You can just barely see the A-frame towering in the distance. Whether the bandana around your head is black or red, you are there. Whether this is your first or your fiftieth obstacle course race, you are there. Whether you carry your daughter or your racing prosthetic -- or both -- you are there.

7 Tips to Put the WIN in Winter Wheelchair Mobility

7 Tips to Put the WIN in Winter Wheelchair Mobility

Winter can be a magical time, full of opportunities for unique outdoor activities. Whether you love or hate the Winter Season, being well-prepared can have a positive effect on your experience. However, if you are a wheelchair user you might have to take additional preparations to make sure you have a safe and enjoyable winter season. Here are a few tips to help you put the WIN in your Winter Wheelchair Mobility!

San Josef Bay

San Josef Bay

“Backpacking was a big part of life in my twenties.  It was also what threw me into an existential crisis whenafter I got my first wheelchairsomebody asked, "Do you like backpacking?"  How do you answer that question, if you really like something, but you can't actually do it?  Ever since I started wheelchair hiking, I have wanted to go wheelchair backpacking.  I think I may have finally accomplished that goal.“

Dive into Design: Human Centered Design & the GRIT Freedom Chair

Dive into Design: Human Centered Design & the GRIT Freedom Chair

Our process is rooted in a philosophy known as "human-centered design." This customer-centric approach involves iterative prototyping and careful consideration of the entire product experience. We didn't want to just make a pretty product. We wanted to make a product that met important user needs. We wanted to make a product that would help people achieve great things. 

Rider Spotlight: Aisha Musa

Rider Spotlight: Aisha Musa

“I refuse to live in a world that was not designed to me. I’ve spent my life looking for the right equipment that will allow me to do what I want to do. The [GRIT] Freedom Chair is about being able to do that.”

So, You've Never Used a Manual Wheelchair Before?

So, You've Never Used a Manual Wheelchair Before?

Over 30% of GRIT Freedom Chair riders have never used a manual wheelchair before. Individuals with difficulty walking find that the GRIT Freedom Chair enables easier travel over long distances and rough terrain than their walkers, canes, or crutches. If this is your first wheeled mobility device, you might have some questions, and we're here to help.