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Mountain Trike?

Hello folks

I have SPMS and my mobility is getting worse. I am awaiting MRI results, but guess I know all too well that I have deteriorated a lot since I was last tested about 12 years ago. I have to face up to the fact that if I want to have any sort of life I shall have to accept that I need to use some sort of wheelchair/mobility scooter soon.

I love the great outdoors and miss being able to walk over the fields around our village.

I wonder if any of you have experience of an all-terrain, self-propelled wheelchair called Mountain Trike? It is expensive but the users’ stories/videos and claims about it look really good.

Has anyone had a demo, trial, bought one/used on etc? If yes, what did you think of it?

thanks

Gill

Hello Gill, I’m afraid I haven’t experienced one so I can’t help you, but expect someone on here will be able to answer your question. Janet x

I havent, but have been to MS LIfe, Naidex and Mobility Roadshows the past few years and after much debating and with a legacy am going to go for the GTE Trekinetic.

I owned a mountain trike for 4 years. Plus sides- great when outdoors, visited places I couldn’t do in a wheelchair Not good side- broke down a lot- snapped steering cables, heavy to put in/ out of car. Couldn’t do by myself as SPMS & too heavy for other half to lift. Hard to sit/stand if you have poor mobility. Try before you buy as doesn’t suit everyone. Paul Very good company to deal with. There are local charities that have trikes that hire them.

do you think you`ll have enough strength to self propel over uneven terrain? If so, then great…just wondering is all…

pollsx

Gill No experience of this interesting machine. I use a Tramper which enables me to get out into lots of places. All the best Mick

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Thanks for your comments and feedback. I have it in mind to try one out and see how I get along. From where I live I could try one from either Reading or near Norwich. Reddiven and Mick thanks for your suggestions of alternatives which might suit me. I can see me needing quite a lot of equipment when I go down the route of taking to a wheelchair as I can’t imagine that I will find one chair that suits all requirements. I really want to be able to self-propel as long as I can and not be reliant on having someone to push me about … thanks for your replies Gill

I have thought about getting a converted byke, one with a back supported proper chair almost and on three wheels with a basket. I also thought about getting one of those clever little bykes that as you peddle also creates electricity which you can use on the hills etc.

I trialled a mountain trike and found it tough going on the arms on inclines (speaking as someone with a strong upper body and arms).

Plumped for the berkelbike in the end - it’s a seated trike basically that is both leg and arm operated. Far easier to use and maneouvre. Wouldn’t be without it now. Can be used indoors and out.

Thanks both. I have not heard of a Berkelbike but have just googled it. I have seen something similar, if not it, out and about near where I live. I will bear it in mind. It looks fun, but perhaps not so good when not on a proper road? thanks Gill

I had a trial of a Mountain Trike on quite smooth untarmaced but metaled footpaths on a family outing (Dunkeld, Perthshire). It had the push bar at the back and I ended up being pushed most of the time. Nonetheless, the mountain bike element of the trike made easy what would have been difficult in an ordinary wheel chair. I might do the same outing again but realised my left side weakness is too pronounced for me to use it properly.

I came across the Berkel bike on the web and thought the FES add on would be needed (if it worked OK on me). Thinking a bit more I realised a regular recumbent trike would work OK as the cycling motion doesn’t require left hip flexion so for now I have a regular recumbent trike that’s OK for road and cycleways but not for rough stuff.

Hello Gill,

A compromise for me:

I also live in a small village, up a muddy lane and face the same multiple issues: off-roading wheelchair/scooter/powerchair, indoor outdoor and town and country.

I also have SPMS C3 C4 damage with left-side weakness. I’m not going to get better!

So I thought going forward it might be better to have a full assessment with NHS Wheelchair Services and get some advice and be properly measured. All NHS chairs are made-to-measure. This is important. Think about repetitive strain issues, and safety controlling the chair on a hill, or going up and down curbs etc.,.

It’s actually really hard. I weigh 70kgs - so having the strength to control 70kgs on wheels on a slope at the hospital was dangerous for me. I caught my fingers in the spokes of the wheels trying to slow the chair. Ouch!!

So I had a trip to NHS Wheelchair Services 5 months ago now, and last week my new chairs arrived - on an NHS prescription - a manual chair and a neuro powerchair designed for folk with MS and neuro diseases:

Invacare Action 3NG with two sets of wheels which pop off. This chairs folds and goes into the car easily. I need someone to push me however.

Also a super powerchair Quickie salsa mini 2, which turns on a six-pence - so great for narrow door ways and corridors at home or out and about. It is tank like with mid-wheel drive - so 6 wheels.

The NHS put heavy duty solid tyres on it, so it is good on the grass, for going up and down my muddy lane, and bringing me home from the village shop.

http://www.sunrisemedical.co.uk/powered-wheelchairs/quickie/power-wheelchairs/salsa-m​

I will have this powerchair for 5 years. It will remain the property of the NHS and is issued free - “on loan, for my use only” and will be maintained by NHS Wheelchair Services. I am so grateful. Thank you NHS!

My local bough council fitted a ramp to the back door, so I have access to the garden, but

I had to buy ramps for putting it in to the car - this powerchair is 113kgs and its back folds down and the foot plate folds up. So it will fit into the boot of a medium sized hatchback car.

But I need help to do this. The ramps are about 8kgs each - there are two of them called ‘Smart Ramps’. I bought mine used for £60. And you need to fit the ramps in to the car and strap down the powerchair by the four restrain ‘tie down’ points. I bought the tie downs myself.

http://www.discount-mobility.co.uk/p532725/smart-ramps.html

https://www.machinemart.co.uk/c/tie-downs-strops-blocks-shackles/

So, it’s now possible for me to go along official country paths - the local National Trust ones - which are maintained - are fine for this powerchair. It’s also super for at home and the shops because it is narrow and easy to turn. It goes 6mph and does about 32km. I’m happy.

So, a compromise for me: I know I will get even weaker - I need to stick to the pathways - but I can enjoy the fresh air and country views. I don’t need to be pushed, but I do need help getting this machine into and out of the car if I want to go outside the village. I could however take this powerchair on a bus/train - but the buses are only one an hour.

There are no street lights in my village, so I’m going to buy some high viz extras, and some lights so I’m ready for winter.

That’s my experience.

Good luck!

Fay

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Thank Fay for your detailed and helpful reply.

You are right, there is lots to think about, especially the risk of accident or injury of any sort, and some sort of professional advice will be needed before I do anything.

I get my MRI results a week today … I know how I feel, physically and emotionally, so I suppose I shouldn’t have any shocks when told the extent of the lesions which weren’t there the last time I was tested, but I can’t help worrying.

thanks all for your replies.

Gill

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Hello Gill.

Like Mick, I have a Tramper. I also bought a trailer to use on the back of a car.

It’s been fantastic and not to hard on the old bones.

Best wishes, Steve

Hi Gill

Something I’ve got is a FreeWheel attachment. It’s a large wheel (maybe 12 inch or so in diameter) which clips on to the footrest of a wheelchair, effectively turning it into a tricycle. The problem with going off road in a normal chair is that the front castor wheels get easily stuck. But because the attachment is so much larger, it can easily roll over bumps. It might not get you over terrain quite as rough as the mountain trike, but it’s a fraction of the cost (a few hundred quid) and easily transportable.

Dan