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Dynamic Seating – Exploring Theory, Research, and Products

Dynamic Seating – Exploring Theory, Research, and Products

Suzanne Eason, OT/L
Michelle L. Lange, OTR/L, ABDA, ATP/SMS
Jessica Presperin Pedersen, OTD, OTR/L, MBA
Jill Sparacio, OTR/L, ATP, ABDA

Course Description:

Dynamic Seating is an intervention which incorporates movement within the wheelchair frame or seating system. Dynamic seating can be used to: absorb and diffuse the force of involuntary movement caused by spasticity or increased tone, reduce energy exertion, protect the client from injury, reduce wear and tear on the wheelchair or seating components, promote controlled movement in select planes, enhance function for individuals with paralysis or decreased movement, lessen agitation, maximize sitting tolerance, diminish fatigue, boost alertness, and/or act as a sensory-motor intervention. This workshop will cover the physiological and functional benefits of dynamics seating. Theoretical concepts will be discussed on how enriched environments involving movement and the sense of movement via vestibular and proprioceptive apparatus are essential for neuroplasticity of the brain. Dynamic seating allows for experience dependent activity, which enhances volitional and motivational internal experiences. Evidence for the benefits of providing dynamic seating as an intervention will be shared. Commercial and custom fabricated wheelchairs and accessories will be demonstrated to depict how the products can be used with an individual, highlight the reasons for recommendation, and discuss pros and cons based on experience and observation.

Learning Objectives:

The participant will be able to:

  1. Provide two explanations of how dynamic seating is applied using physics.
  2. Discuss the difference between dynamic seating and suspension.
  3. Provide two evidence-based results demonstrating the benefits of dynamic seating.
  4. Describe three indications for why a dynamic seating system would be recommended.
  5. Discuss six options for providing dynamic movement at the hip, pelvis, head, and knees.
  6. Provide two concepts illustrating how movement can enhance brain development.
  7. Demonstrate how voluntary dynamic movement can enhance a functional activity.
  8. Explain how dynamic hardware can protect parts of a wheelchair.

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