Reducing Injuries and Pain by Making Your Bedroom Accessible

By Lucy Lawrence

There are big differences in the way that wheelchair use affects men and women. A study published in Top Spinal Cord Injury Rehabilitation found that the prevalence of women with spinal cord injury is increasing, and women can be more susceptible to fatigue and the development of shoulder pain. In the bedroom, sources of pain for women in wheelchairs can include getting in and out of bed, lifting heavy items, and having inadequate mattress support. It is important to address these problems in order to design a room that is functional, accessible, and comfortable.

Space is Key

Your bedroom should be large enough to enable you to enter the room, reach and transfer to the side of the bed you prefer, turn easily, and access all parts of the bedroom - including wardrobes, drawers, and the like. In addition to using the ADA Standards for Accessible Design Guidelines, you will also need to place furniture in such a way that each item is able to perform its intended use. For instance, in a small room, you may opt for a smaller bed to gain space or standing closets with doors that slide sideways instead of opening frontally. Closet rods can be installed at a lower height or pull-down rods on hydraulic assisted hinges make clothes within reach and an effective use of space.

Media (and Fashion!) is for Every Body

By Amy Saffell
Amy Saffell (bottom right) armed with GoPro & crew

People with disabilities are significantly underrepresented in the media, both on camera and in media jobs behind the scenes. In Nashville, through a partnership with the adaptive sports and independence nonprofit ABLE Youth ( and Nashville Education, Community and Arts Television Network (NECAT) (, change is happening! NECAT, a public access television station, has so far trained about a half dozen of ABLE Youth's teenagers and the Executive Director to run everything in the studio, from cameras to floor directing to technical directing to audio to sets and lighting to being on camera and are now television producers with the public access station.
In the control room.