The OT’s Perspective: Time to recline?
How do you know which chairs are right for your customers? Ask an occupational therapist…
Chairs, they’re pretty important. Very important in fact. No matter what walk of life you’re in, no matter your job or your personal situation, sitting home in a comfortable chair at the end of the day is an experience we all want and need.
And for those with disabilities and mobility issues, a chair that is comfortable to sit in and also makes transitions & movement easy is even more important.
That’s where recliners chairs come in.
Why should you consider selling chairs from specialist suppliers like Recliners?
Speaking as an OT, I can tell you that recliners chairs have made the lives of many of my clients much, much better.
When a client finds it difficult to get up, down, and around, life can be a lot more difficult, so anything that makes those everyday movements easier is worth investing in.
How can you help clients choose the right chairs?
Making sure your client gets the right specialist chair is vital. Here are a few pointers on how to do it:
Ask them what difficulties (if any) they are having with their existing furniture
- Is it too high, too low or too hard?
- Are they finding transfers difficult?
- Do they suffer from pressure ulcers?
- Has their medical condition changed, making their current furniture no longer appropriate?
Asking these sorts of questions will help you to understand what it is the client needs from a chair and, therefore, which chair is most appropriate for them.
Ask an occupational therapist
Yes, I might be an occupational therapist but that isn’t the reason why I’m suggesting this!
You see, OTs are the guys ‘on the ground’, working with your customers (our clients) and understanding exactly what their clients’ needs are, so speaking to them really is invaluable.
That’s exactly what Recliners did at the end of last year, booking our clinical team to review a selection of their chairs and help them to understand the markets that would most benefit from them.
Together with Recliners, we put together a list of associates to attend this ‘review day’, consisting of OTs from all sorts of different backgrounds – private, NHS, social services, and charity – with all sorts of different types of expertise including learning disability, elderly, children, young people & families, clients who lack capacity, sensory loss, and neurological deficits.
The associates were able to review and discuss the domestic range and home care range of chairs and focus on the multi-care and eco-flex specialist chairs, as these are the chairs likely to require clinical input when prescribing for our clients.
These associates provided huge value to Recliners, allowing them to truly understand the pros and cons of each chair for each client group, improving the targeting of their marketing and future product innovation.
Remember, you don’t know what you don’t know, so rather than producing a product that you’ve got no idea whether anyone will buy, do the work up front and get more minds on it – it’ll pay dividends in the long run!
Stuart Barrow of Promoting Independence is a member of the British Association of Occupational Therapists panel and a recognised contributor in the field of home adaptations. His experience is sought by manufacturers and service providers looking for an expert opinion. He also runs the Occupational Therapy Adaptations Conference
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