To measure a wheelchair cushion, you need to calculate the seating area in two directions:
The Width: Start by positioning the user’s sitting position on a flat surface for measurements. A regular flat chair is perfect for this practice.
Your reference point to measure the width will be the widest part of the person sitting on the flat surface. It could be the hips or thighs.
Once you determine the length from side to side based on the broadest points, add 1 inch to this number to allow extra space for the user to move comfortably without going beyond the area comprised by the cushion.
The Length: Do the same positioning as you did when measuring the width. At this point, your reference points would be the very back of the user’s buttocks up until the back of the knees.
Once you have this number, subtract 1 to 2 inches to the cushion’s final measurement. This is crucial to avoid skin damage. If the cushion reaches the back of the knee, it will be a problem throughout the day as the skin rubs against the surface.
If the user cannot use the legs to assist with movements, then taking away 1 inch from the initial measurement number is sufficient.
If the wheelchair user uses the legs to assist in movements, then 2 inches must be taken away to avoid skin problems.
The seat’s height will depend on the wheelchair needs, ranging from a pressure sore treatments or prevention, pelvic obliquity assistance, and other different needs.
Make sure the wheelchair can adapt to the footrest heights based on the fit of the wheelchair cushions prescribed.