For the last 6 months I’ve needed a lot of help getting around. Due to my injury I can’t walk as much so we’ve been trying out different tools to help.
For big outdoor places like a forest (!) i can ride something like my trike. But for day to day access it’s been much harder. We’ve mostly been using the buggy. It’s lovely, but it’s rather bulky.
To give ourselves more options we ordered the new stroller last weekend, it arrived quickly and we’ve been using it about a week.
I wanted to share some first impressions as it’s hard finding reviews of the stroller from people who use them.
The short summery would be. Its… okay.
There is a lot to like about the stroller.
First of all, I like that it’s a stroller and not a wheelchair. If given the choice I’ll take something ‘childish’ over something ‘medical’ any day of the week. It’s just much more friendly.
It’s sorta like a large McLaren Major Elite. Mine is quite basic, but it can be more friendly in the future once we add a few accessories like the canopy and colourful seat options.
Being a stroller it also folds in exactly the same way any other stroller folds. It take literally less than 2 seconds to fold. It’s much easier to fold than the buggy. Once folded it’s also much smaller.
Having a stroller like this means I don’t need a wheelchair adapted vehicle. It’s trivial to take it in a car or taxi. It’s also suitable for short bus rides as it’s crash rated and plenty strong.
Its general small size is also quite useful. I’ve been able to use it around my home. For example I’ve been using it as a desk chair when I am eating, playing games and working.
The harness has been a pleasant surprise. It’s impressively supportive and comfortable. The extra support helps reduce the burning feeling in my sides as it holds me in place a little more.
Finally it’s quite affordable in the grand scheme of things. It was around one fifth the cost of a full buggy.
While it’s more comfortable than my desk chair was. It’s far from being a comfortable place to sit for a long period. Too much weight goes through my tailbone region and that causes a lot of pain.
We sort of expected this so it’s not a huge surprise. It wouldn’t work as a place to sit all day at somewhere like the zoo or visiting the drs. The buggy is much better for those places.
The second issue is that it’s very very exposed. Unlike the buggy which has side protection and feels safe, the stroller is very open to the elements. From an autistic & sensory perspective this is very draining.
We’re going to try the canopy & a blanket over my legs too see if that improves the sensory side of things.
We may also try the extended headrest to see if that helps me feel less exposed.
Finally the wheelchair style footrests are very clunky and annoying. I don’t like using them and I may try making something nicer to replace them.
I’ll write a proper review in the future but overall the first impression is positive. It’s impressed me enough I am going to keep it.
It can’t replace a proper buggy but it compliments it well. Providing me with different options so I can use the best tool for each situation.
I’m glad I waited till I found something I liked. A bad wheelchair would have made the grief much harder to process. While the Trotter Chair isn’t perfect it’s a very good starting point and something I can build on.