Precision Rehab, a specialist powerchair retailer and distributor, has helped a YouTube vlogger pursue her dreams of launching her own fashion brand after supplying a bespoke Piccolino Paravan powerchair.
Living with Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) Type 2, ambitious Ellie Darby from Essex has refused to let her condition get in the way of her love of fashion.
Working part-time at a clothing store and volunteering for an autism charity, she also runs her own fashion YouTube channel and is planning to launch her very own apparel brand, aimed at bringing more diversity into the fashion industry for everyone with or without a disability.
Now due to begin studying fashion at Brighton University, Ellie required a powerchair that could enable her to enjoy freedom and independence on campus whilst also providing peace of mind for her friends and family as she enjoys student life
With several of her friends who also have SMA Type 2 having already purchased chairs from Precision Rehab and highly recommending Precision Rehab’s Co-Founder Matt and the rest of the team, Ellie contacted the company to arrange an assessment.
“My condition means my muscles waste away and I have never been able to walk or stand unaided so like many other people with SMA a powerchair is literally a lifeline and without it I am stranded. I’d had my previous powerchair for 10 years and I knew the time was coming for me to change it as it was simply coming to the end of its life,” commented Ellie.
“From the first time I spoke with Matt, I was struck by his commitment to making sure I got the chair which would meet all my requirements. I explained to Matt what I needed and how my new chair had to replicate the seating and positioning of my old model and Matt assured me this would be achieved – he didn’t let me down!”
Specialising in the assessment, sales & servicing of specialist powerchairs and with 25 years of experience in its team, Precision Rehab says Ellie’s new Piccolino is a perfect example of the bespoke and tailored service it provides.
Precision rehab vlogger 2Discussing Ellie’s chair, Matthew James, Co-Director at Precision Rehab, commented: “Ellie had some very specific requirements; we fitted a new backrest which was identical to the one she had on her previous chair along with a swing-away lateral support and modified the footplate to ensure it fitted Ellie’s feet. To help Ellie control the functions of her chair, we fitted a more sensitive switch and for increased comfort, we replaced the standard armrests with Gel Ovations specialist armrest pads and moved the armrest closer to the seat.”
Designed to meet the needs of many young powerchair users, the versatile Piccolino boasts a maximum user capacity of 80kg; puncture-proof, non-marking tyres; high tech lighting; seat widths of 270 – 430 mm, depths of 320 – 385 mm; and back heights of 400mm to 480mm.
Ellie added: “I just love my new chair, it is so comfortable, I have much more room than in my previous chair and the level of seat functions is amazing. For example, I can now slide my seat forward so I can sit closer to a table when working on my fashion brand or YouTube channel or enjoying dinner with family or friends.
“However, the best thing for me is the powered swing-away mounting for my controller. For years I have had to ask friends to move it for me but not anymore – these may be little things but they make a huge difference to me as I have never had either before.”
The chair also has a range of additional features, including side supports and head support with further seating accessories available, all of which are multi-variable and individually adjustable, says Precision Rehab.
Praising the service from Precision Rehab, she continued: “From day one everyone at Precision Rehab has been amazing, they really listen and take into consideration what you need from your chair to ensure it will fit in with your lifestyle. Nothing is overlooked, they remember every little detail that you tell them, going above and beyond for you from the first assessment, through to delivery, with any queries you may have once you have your powerchair quickly answered.
“My new chair is going to make a huge difference when I start University and I would not hesitate in recommending Precision Rehab to anyone looking for a new powerchair, in fact, I have already done so to several friends.”