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Ok Quads...

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    Ok Quads...

    How do you pick things up off the ground, if you do? I'm C5/6 and use a powerchair primarily and always seem to drop stuff. I'd like to be able to get the stuff I drop instead of waiting for someone to help me. Any ideas?

    The method depends on the place. A magnet inside a bag picks up ferrous metal objects. A stick used to chase an object into a box works, but the box has to be against a non moving surface... like a wheelchair. Sometimes a wad of tape on the end of a stick.

    You really need Batman's utility belt. It just depends where and what. I could use more ideas as well.


      I use a coat hanger to hook stuff or a butterfly net to pick up things that can't be hooked. Or else I yell "Honey! I dropped...."

      "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow"
      ~ Anon
      Emily, C-8 sensory incomplete mom to a 8 year old and a preschooler. TEN! years post.


        Service dog.

        Also I've used pencils with gum on the end for papers.

        Hangers are great.

        Long sticks to scoot stuff off a counter to land perfectly in one's lap (you hope).
        Get involved in politics as if your life depended on it, because it does. -- Justin Dart

        I shall not tolerate ignorance or hate speech on this site.


          i use reachers. i have 3 different kinds.

          i also can bend over and get things, depending on what they are. when in manual chair i used to use the arm of my chair lol (it was a quickie with the swing away armrests you can just pull off chair).

          coathangers or any kind of stick works, too.


            I've jokingly told my son that I'm going to attach everything he owns to bungie cords! [img]/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] Also reminded him that as a toddler, he delighted in throwing things off his high chair, so I'm not sure this isn't just repetitive behavior, lol.

            I am curious, tho - what kind of 'quad reachers' do you use? Every one I've seen has a grip handle.

            If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other. - Mother Teresa


              Ive always just jammed the dropped item up against my front caster and manipulated my fingers around it..

              ~We must save the princess,or die trying~..Mickey Mouse


                Agreed with Shaun on his technique.

                I also use a tennis ball chucker (what people use to throw a ball for their dog) to scoop things up, move things, knock things off of shelves. Tendon transfer surgery helped a ton in that I've now got about 40% normal grip function on one (right) hand so I can use the chucker pretty normally.


                  I can pick things up off the floor if they're light enough. I do it by hooking my left arm around my push handle (I don't wear a chest strap) then lean forward very far, sorta leaning to the right (make sure you park your chair so the item is on your right side) and then manipulate your fingers around it. Sometimes pushing the item up against the front right caster wheel helps with the manipulation.

                  If the item is too heavy for me, I used to use my quad reacher which I swiftly ran over about 6 years ago [img]/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif[/img] SO INSTEAD...

                  I take out a paper garbage bag (with handles), open the bag up, then lay is open on the floor tipped on its side. I then either use my hand by reaching over (as described in the earlier paragraph) to push the item into the bag, or I use my broken reacher to push the item in. This really works awesome!

                  After getting the item in the bag, reach forward just a little to grab the bag handle then voila! You should be able to pick up the bag and set it on the table to retrieve the item inside.
                  May the fetus you save be gay


                    not sure if this will help, but this is how i do it--
                    i lean over in my chair and kinda give myself a spasm in my hands (my hands are usually open and giving myself a spasm makes them close/clench)...sometimes it works, but sometimes it doesn't. im c6-7. i kinda have to be quick about it cuz it only lasts a minute and then i just drop whatever im trying to get then it's over.

                    i also pick things up by placing one arm on one tire of my manuel chair (to stabalize myself) and then lean towards the other side to try to get something off the floor--usually something with a handle works best.

                    ~~Everyone wants to change the world, but nobody wants to change himself. ~Leo Tolstoy~


                      i can usually get things w/ my hands. check out your local pet store in the pooper scooper section for some very handy pick up tools. trust me.

                      "Madness has no purpose. Or reason. But it may have a goal."
                      Death and taxes


                        coat hangers are great, i stretch them out so the are longer. i have at least six scattered throughout the house. i keep one in my car as well
                        c4/5 inc funtioning c6. 28 yrs post.
                        sponsored handcycle racer


                          Hey, Kimmy. I'm also a C5/6 and I agree with fuentejps that coat hangers are great. They are easy to bend so you can shape them to fit whatever you are picking up. I also use the splint I use for typing. It's about a foot long with a pencil on the end, eraser side down, and can hook almost anything. I've yet to find a way to pick up dropped books and cds, though.
                          "I'm lost. I'm no guide, but I'm by your side." - Pearl Jam

                          "It decomposes, mendicant, therefore, truly, one calls this the world." -- Loka Sutta



                            Most quadriplegics probably use this kind of quad reacher. You only need wrist extension (can bend wrist up) to open it and the elastics close it. I have some wrist flexion so I don't use the elastics, which makes it a little more versatile. I also added velcro straps to the metal bands at the hand and forearm for better control.


                              Unfortunately Jeff that reacher is too expensive for me. The coathanger is a good idea except that when I drop things they are things like TV remotes and stuff, too big for a hanger.

                              I'm frustrated [img]/forum/images/smilies/frown.gif[/img]