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Dynamic Stories: an interview with 2009 Ms. Arkansas Wheelchair

Dynamic Stories: an interview with 2009 Ms. Arkansas Wheelchair

Michelle L. Lange, OTR/L, ABDA, ATP/SMS

I recently spoke with Ryan Read, ATP of Presidential Mobility in Fayetteville, AK. He shared how much Dynamic Seating had impacted a client he works with – Jacqueline. I was particularly intrigued that her new Dynamic Seating has actually improved her speech production. Wow! Jacqueline was kind enough to share more about herself and her experiences.

JacquelineTell me a little bit about yourself! What do you do with your time, do you have any special interests, and what is something most people wouldn’t know about you?
Jacqueline is a resident of Fayetteville, Arkansas, though is originally from Little Rock, Arkansas. She has a B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Speech Communication from the University of Central Arkansas in Conway. Jacqueline also earned a Master of Science in Vocational Rehabilitation from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. In 2009, Jacqueline was named Ms. Arkansas wheelchair!

“I paint, write, and visit friends and family when possible. I love to walk the trails and I attend comedy shows and concerts and other community activities at every opportunity. I’m also addicted to coffee and Mexican food. Something that people might not know about me is that I was in show choir in elementary school and got to sing at Carnegie Hall in New York City at age 10 or 11 in 3 different languages as part of the National Children’s Choir.”

How long have you used a power wheelchair?
“I received my first power wheelchair 30 years ago at age 4.” Wow, I bet Jacqueline has seen many changes in power wheelchairs over the years! She currently uses a right mounted joystick with a goal post style handle and is able to directly access her smartphone using a finger.

Ryan shared that you were having a number of issues with your wheelchair. How were these issues impacting your day to day life?
Jacqueline had developed pressure injuries on her heel and spine from pushing against the back of the seating system – a flat board made of foam and vinyl. She had little contact with the back, especially when extending. This unrelieved force was also leading to breakage, including backcanes, legrest hangers and receivers, and footplates. If it didn’t break, it moved out of position. Functionally, her high tone made talking difficult, as well as using her phone and driving the power wheelchair.

“It got to where I could not sit for more than 3 hours at a time during the day without constant pain ... it’s significantly reduced since I changed to a dynamic seating system.”

“It got to where I could not sit for more than 3 hours at a time during the day without constant pain. Dynamic seating moves with my body and hypertonic muscle tone, therefore now, even though I still experience pain from my spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy, it’s significantly reduced since I changed to a dynamic seating system.” Jacqueline now uses a Seating Dynamics Dynamic Rocker Back interface and Dynamic Footrests.

Jacqueline’s speech is much improved when using her Dynamic Seating, as well. A research study by Tim Adlam in 2014* found increased vocalization in people using Dynamic Seating. The Dynamic Seating absorbs and diffuses extensor forces, and this can even lead to a reduction of tone around the vocal cords and mouth which impact speech production. For more information, check out this blog.

What is something that you wish were available that would make day to day living easier for you? Dream away!
“I would love to have a yacht to take occasional vacations! I dream of a cure for ALS. My father lost his battle with ALS in July of 2020 and I would give anything for a cure to be found.”

Wow, Jacqueline is rocking the world and we are so glad that Dynamic Seating can play a small role in helping in that journey! Never stop dreaming, Jacqueline!

Learn more from Jacqueline's Case Study.

*Adlam T (Designability), Orpwood R (University of B), Wisbeach A (Great OSH), Alger H (Great OSH), Johnson E (Great OSH). (2014). Whole Body Dynamic Seating for Children with Extensor Spasms. In: Cooper D, Story M, editors. 30th International Seating Symposium. Vancouver: Interprofessional Continuing Education, University of British Columbia. pp. 182–185.

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