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Wheelchair bags - what to look for

If you are a new wheelchair user you will soon recognise that you need some form of wheelchair bag to carry your kit whether it be small everyday items or bigger bulkier items including work papers or laptop computers. There are many types of wheelchair bags and they various shapes, sizes, and have a variety of functions. We aim to help you with the selection process to ensure you have the most suitable storage for your needs. Among the more popular wheelchair bags are armrest bags, under seat bags, glove bags, down in front bags and cargo racks.

As their name suggests, armrest bags hang from the armrest of the and can therefore be fitted to left, right or both armrests of the wheelchair. They are popular due to their convenience and accessibility when seated. When considering an armrest wheelchair bag check the height measurement of drop to be sure that it will fit without it touching the rear wheelchair wheels particularly on a self propelled wheelchair that has bigger wheels. These types of bag suit some models better than ever depending on whether or not your wheelchair has anti trap skirts fitted to prevent clothing becoming caught up in the wheels. If you do have these skirts fitted make sure the bag hangs on the outside and over the wheel.

"Down in front" bags are bags that are fitted directly to the frame of the wheelchair and are sited in front of the seated user making for easy access to most. These types of wheelchair bags often have velcro weather flaps to keep your kit dry and secure to prevent loss. These come in many sizes and will often have internal compartments for organising your belongings. Be sure to consider the material from which it is made and check whether it is shower proof or fully water proof depending on what you wish to store.

Glove bags and glove boxes are also available for wheelchairs. These often fit directly beneath the wheelchair seat which makes access less easy. Although called glove boxes or glove bags, they are often used to store items that are not required frequently including emergency tool kits or wet weather gear. They typically suit smaller items however. To store bigger items, cargo rack bags can be attached to the wheelchair frame and provide more volume for bulkier items such as blankets or clothing.

For wheelchair users who want to transport even larger items other types of bags are available as standard or can be customised to suit including features like internal sub compartments, clips, velcro closures, buckles, flaps, and straps to ensure you can carry and store what you need while out and about. We urge you to consider the size, weight and material of such bags to ensure they provide the storage space required and protect your goods from rain and everyday knocks. Some fabrics offer more protection than others and some bags even use a padded fabric to rescue the possibility of damage to their contents. This is particularly important if you plan to carry your phone, laptop or tablet in your wheelchair bag.