|Everyone is included in this family outing at D.A.R. State|
Forest thanks to the use of a modified sitski.
Here's a look at what we've done to make sitskis more user friendly for those who require secure assistance for gentle winter outings.
With credit to Brenda Davies (pictured far right) for the initial momentum for this project, the DMR handled our first fabrication of two sitskis and did a professional job in their shop. We provided the sitskis - they created a stainless steel stroller bar handle and clamped it on. To prevent sideways tipping of occupants that is easily caused by an irregular posture and trail ruts, the DMR fabricators created an outrigger from of the tips of downhill skis mounted on blocks and attached to a bar, which is then clamped onto the sitski frame. A chest strap can also be used to keep a passenger's weight more centered in the seat - the handle bar frame provides a secure support.
|Sitski by Colin Dye with stroller bar and outriggers by the |
Massachusetts DMR fabrication shop.
Since the DMR could only do a one-time project for us, we resorted to a new design for our next set of modified sitskis, using flexible conduit pipe to bend an arched and wider handlebar shape onto the back of the sitski, attached with plumbing clamps. The handle in this case extends beyond the width of the sitski - a feature that is great for easier manueverability for the pusher, but complicated for transport - so the bigger the sitski, the better it is to keep it based on one site. The outriggers were a close replica of our DMR designed model. Thanks to Michelle Bitgood for creating and completing this fabrication and adding to our fleet!
|The modified Ski For Light sitski.|
|Sitski by Bob Hall with modifications by Michelle Bitgood.|
All of these designs function well and demonstrate a range of possibilities. So often adaptive equipment needs further modification to better serve users and much homespun innovation goes on out there! If you have other solutions for supporting people with severe disabilities on the snow, please share! I am still surprised that there isn't a standard product on the market yet - or if there is, please let us know!