Special Needs Seating Systems that Tilt in Space and Recline
When shopping for adaptive seating, you'll often come across two different options – a seat that has a reclining back and a seat that can tilt-in-space. Both allow for users to sit upright and in a reclined position, but their mechanisms differ. The tilt-in-space function tips the whole seat backwards or forwards keeping the angle at the hip the same. The recline function moves only the seat back and changes the angle of flexion (bending) at the hip. As the backrest reclines, the hip angle opens making it greater than 90⁰. These options are especially important to consider if your child has abnormal muscle tone. If your child tends to arch into extension, a very important part of managing this is by maintaining the 90⁰ angles at their hips and knees to “break up” this pattern. Also, lots of kids benefit from the having their seats tilted back as their caregivers work on positioning their hips back in the chair prior to fastening the hip belt.
Many seating systems, such as the Jenx Junior
have both the reclining backrest and tilt-in-space features. This provides lots of options. For example, if you simply wanted to provide your child with pressure relief without making any adjustments to the hip angle, you could use the tilt-in-space feature. If later in the day you'd like your child to lie back to sleep, you can achieve that too without switching to a whole different piece of equipment.
Which Tilt-in-Space Chair is Right for Us?
Checking in with your child’s therapist is always the best place to start. They can help guide you with how much postural support the chair will need to provide and its capacity for adjustments as your child grows and changes in ability. For example, the Leckey Squiggles Chair
is a very popular option for children from 1 to 5 years old with significant positioning needs, while the R28Wombat
is best for children with moderate positioning needs who need a versatile chair for all of their daily activities. But if in doubt, please reach out to us!