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    Adapting to Life Outside Our Home With SMA

    I once heard a joke that a woman’s mind is like an Internet browser that has 1000 tabs open and running at once. I laughed at the time, but came to realize that if I didn’t actually feel like this before hearing the short acronym “SMA,” I most certainly do now.

    I spend much of my time pre-planning and thinking of possible problems that we may run into because of the kids’ diagnoses. I think many other SMA parents do this as well. Prior to our lives with SMA, we didn’t realize just how inaccessible the world is to those who are differently-abled.

  • This topic has 4 replies, 3 voices, and was last updated 6 months ago by Kevin Schaefer.

    • Author
      • #19355
        Kevin Schaefer

        Summer is here! I don’t know about you all, but I’ve always loved swimming during this time of year.

        For me, my parents became unable to lift me in and out of the pool years ago. It was a bummer, but fortunately I started going to water therapy in 2015. Now I’m in the pool every week, and I love it! The pool I go to has a built-in-ramp, and my physical therapist gets me in via a manual wheelchair. They have a built-in lift as well, but I prefer this transfer method.

        Does anyone here go swimming during the summer? Do you go to a pool with a specialized lift?

      • #19367
        DeAnn R

        How do you get transferred to the other chair? That’s one of the things that holds me back from trying it. I haven’t been in a pool for years.

        • #19368
          Kevin Schaefer

          They have an electric lift at the clinic I go to transfer me out of my chair. I know not every place has this setup, but I wish it were more commonplace.

      • #19369
        Bob Heitzman

        I’d like to see one of the davit style pool chairs with just a spreader bar instead of (or addition to) a seat. That way you could use a sling for the transfer. I guess it might be hard to get the sling on properly in the water.

        • #19370
          Kevin Schaefer

          That would be cool. And actually, it is doable to have a sling in the pool. When my physical therapist drives me into the pool in the manual chair each week, she just keeps the sling under me. This way, it’s still on the seat of the manual chair when I get out of the pool. It’s tricky to keep the sling in place, but it’s doable.

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