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Lightweight Wheelchairs

Patient Handling can assist if you are looking for a manual wheelchair, whether it be a self-propelled wheelchair or an attendant propelled wheelchair.  We stock a large range lightweight wheelchairs to suit your needs. View other products in this category here: Kids WheelchairsComfort WheelchairsElectric Wheelchairs 


What are lightweight wheelchairs?

Lightweight wheelchairs are wheelchairs that tend to weigh less because they are constructed from aluminium instead of the heavier, sturdier, more durable steel. Since most lightweight wheelchairs are also folding wheelchairs, they are not as substantial as traditional wheelchairs.

How heavy is a lightweight wheelchair?

A lightweight wheelchair is generally made of steel or aluminum. Due to this composition, these chairs tend to weigh between 8 to 9 kg. Of course, the weight can vary (more or less) if the wheelchair has other accessories or is made from different material.

Lightweight Wheelchairs

Although wheelchairs were not mass-produced until the late 19th century, they have made many strides in terms of advancements. The first ‘lightweight’ portable wheelchair was not created until 1933, but it was rather bulky and inconvenient to carry around despite fitting into a vehicle. On the bright side, many advancements have been made in the wheelchair space, which is fantastic news for those with limited mobility.

From mobility devices that help increase independence to the lightweight manual wheelchair, users can participate in activities to their fullest capacity. Given the name, you may wonder how much a lightweight wheelchair weighs and how it compares to a regular wheelchair. The typical manual lightweight wheelchair can weigh anywhere between 11 to 18 kgs, while an ultra-lightweight wheelchair might weigh only 7 to 8 kgs. Traditional manual wheelchairs can weigh up to 27kgs, while power wheelchairs can weigh between 22 to 100+ kgs! Lightweight wheelchairs tend to weigh less because they are constructed from aluminium instead of the heavier, sturdier, more durable steel. Since most lightweight wheelchairs are also folding wheelchairs, they are not as substantial as traditional wheelchairs. This makes them less costly and depends on the material used to make the lightweight foldable wheelchair prices can range anywhere from $150 to $3500.

Our range of lightweight wheelchairs in Australia cost anywhere from $500 to $1,500. The Karma brand of wheelchair is a great mid-range option that provides durability, comfortability, and convenience.

Lightweight folding wheelchairs are inappropriate for anyone who weighs over 100 kgs as their design does not support extreme weights. These portable wheelchairs are also not meant for full-time wheelchair users. They are best for those who have trouble walking long distances, those who may still have some use of their limbs or those who have a temporary injury. These chairs can also be used as a travel wheelchair for those who still want to explore without the limitations a traditional wheelchair may impose. Lightweight folding wheelchairs and portable wheelchairs have an array of benefits which is why it’s such a popular option for wheelchair users of all ages.

Ease of Transportation – due to their foldable frame, lightweight foldable wheelchairs can be easily transported either in a car or simply up and down the stairs. With a lightweight wheelchair, whether you’re travelling by car, bus, or plane, you can quickly fold up your chair for a hassle-free experience.
Encourages Independence – A lightweight, portable wheelchair increases independence for its users. The ability to throw the chair into a car or form of public transport means that the user has a new sense of freedom. There are various reasons why one may end up in a wheelchair, but that doesn’t mean it should dictate your life.

Convenience – Portable wheelchairs are extremely easy to store to fold, and fit into small spaces. These chairs have many other features that make them highly convenient such as leg rests, armrests, cushioning, and built-in safety features.

Lightweight wheelchairs are ideal for people who still have some mobility or for individuals who are recovering from a temporary injury. Often lightweight chairs are helpful for older people who find it difficult to walk for long distances. In some instances, having access to a lightweight wheelchair can help a more senior person maintain their independence. If the chair is light enough for a person to lift and use on their own, they won’t need the assistance of a nurse or other caregiver.

The material used for the frame of the wheelchair has the most significant impact on its overall weight. Although steel might be a relatively sturdy metal, it is also a heavy one. Lightweight wheelchairs tend to have an aluminium frame. Aluminium is a softer metal than steel, meaning the maximum weight capacity will be lower and therefore not suitable to a heavier user.

Aside from the frame materials, other features to consider when making a selection are include the following:
Legrests: Legrests on a wheelchair can either be swing-away or fixed. Swing-away legrests are helpful for people who have some use of their legs and might want to “walk” their chairs while sitting in them. They are also useful when transferring from a stand to sit position and vice versa.
Wheels: The size of the wheels determines who can control the chair. If the user wants to self-propel the chair, large back wheels are a must. If a carer is required to push the chair, a transit style with smaller rear wheels will be suitable and can reduce the overall weight of the wheelchair.
Safety Features Anti-tip bars on the back, attendant and/or user controlled brakes and a seatbelt to prevent a person from slipping out of the seat are worth considering.

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