Now here’s a COOL design for those HOT summer days! Mobi-mats are lightweight, durable, portable mats that can be rolled out onto sandy beaches making them accessible to wheelchairs, walkers, canes and strollers.
Mobi-mats in action at Rockaway Beach NYC
These mats are being used on beaches around the world including Rockaway Beach in New York and beaches in Rio de Janeiro.
Recently, Wasaga Beach just outside of Toronto purchased some mobi-mats making their beach one of the most accessible in the province. CBC Metro Morning interviewed town clerk Twyla Nicholson about the town councils decision to purchase the mats, and the impact its having on residents and visitors to the beach.
Simcoe-Grey MP Kellie Leitch pushes Frank Nunnaro, Wasaga Beach resident and Accessibility Advisory Committee member, down the new Mobi-mats towards the water at the ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday, July 11, 2013
Wei Yen hand stitched her wheelchair cover and added many other accessories that make her mobility device more functional AND fun. Check out her foot pedal horn!
Recovering from recent hip surgery for an inflammatory joint infection called synovitis, the superstar was originally given a more traditional wheelchair which she affectionately named ‘Emma’. Not wanting to give up her style however (who does?!), Lady Gaga commissioned jewelry designer Ken Borochov to design the leather-tufted chair that features a removable canopy. Now THAT’s more like it girl – “P-p-p-poker face, p-p-poker face – Mum mum mum mah”…
Good design meets people within the context of their lives. It prioritizes the social as well as the physical circumstances and needs of the individual.
The folks at Motivation – an international development charity supporting people with mobility disabilities – get this. With a focus on SURVIVAL, MOBILITY, EMPOWERMENT, and INCLUSION, they design and distribute high-quality, low-cost wheelchairs, tricycles and supportive seating products specifically for use in developing countries.
In North America we spend a lot of time and resources developing mobility devices that function – mechanically – really well. We spend far less time however, considering how well these same devices function within the social and cultural spaces of people’s lives. There is much we can learn from organizations like Motivation.
Benja loved showing off his newly pimped up chair to his friends. He now has a dragon snake tattooed all around that opens its mouth as the wheels turn, and several customized-by-friends accessories using velcro, and other material, enriching his wheelchair experience! His mom simply posted a message on Facebook saying “I’m starting a new project for Benja’s b’day, want to contribute to an art-a-ride project?”. It’s this simple and easy, help us spread the word.
Art-a-Ride connects creative people with kids with disabilities to turn their factory looking – medicalized – wheelchairs that highlight their limitations, into interesting, meaningful, and in the case of Benja here – super cool – “rides”.
The final co-creations, according to founder Eva de Lera, have a profound impact on the kids, their lives, and the lives of their families. How amazing!
I’ve talked about this before, personalizing mobility aids is a form of self-expression that is not only good for our health and the health of those around us, its also really fun!
The recent debate about stroller crowding on the TTC in Toronto highlights ongoing problems with both the TTC AND with US. This is what I see needs doing:
1. Increase the capacity of the system
2. Improve the design of transit vehicles
3. Be nicer!
The TTC is working on the first two – the third is up to us!
An accessible, efficient, and FRIENDLY public transportation system is a sign of a great city. Let’s figure this out TO!
Jeseok Yi produces powerful messages for social change that not only stop and make you think in that moment, but will follow you long after that…
Toronto’s MANY mountains include this entrance to the Yorkdale Subway Station
This start up has ALL the right ideas! Scaffolding is not only UGLY, it creates significant barriers for people with mobility challenges including older folks, people with disabilities and parents with strollers. I lived in NYC for 5 years and would avoid sidewalks lined with scaffolding whenever possible because it was so unpleasant and felt even scary and dangerous sometimes. Resting places like these are essential for those of us who can’t quite ‘make it all the way’ and health-promoting for all of us as they provide opportunities for social interaction. Way to go SOFTWALKS!
A GREAT laugh and a fantastic way to point out some the challenges our seniors face everyday!
Check this out on YouTube!