Mechanism Benefits – Health and Home

Mechanised chairs, such as rise recliners, are used in many health settings, but are also very popular for at home to support both health and comfort.

In both the Repose Health and Domestic seating ranges there are a number of options regarding the types of motor mechanisms (rise and recliners) that can be used.

Many of these mechanisms are identical across the Health and Domestic ranges with the essential difference being how they can be used in each setting to support many different health conditions depending on their movement combinations and the additional pressure management features that might be included on the specific model of chair.  For the home environment they are often purchased for comfort reasons, but nevertheless they still have potential health advantages.

In general seating mechanisms allow for:

  • Ergonomic sitting positions that support the head, neck, back, hips, and knees in posture positive positions that enable the user to carry out activities such as eating or reading.
  • A range of restful positions, helping to transfer weight and allow for pressure redistribution.
  • Recline positions that lift the legs and feet, aid circulation and reduce fluid retention.
  • Support independent sit to stand transfer and transition into mobilising. This assisted movement helps to:
    • Improve user dignity and independence.
    • Reduce the risk of falls.
    • Manage exercise tolerance.
    • Aid carer moving and handling
  • Comfortable and supportive positions for rest and to sleep for short periods without having access to a bed.

Rise recliners can come with a choice of many mechanisms.  The choice made will depend on the level of care required in terms of the postural positioning and pressure management options that the user needs.  A full list of the mechanisms we currently use and on which chairs can be found on the download Mechanism Comparison.

Rise Recline Mechanisms

In general there are two main types of rise recline chair mechanisms:

1. Single motor mechanisms with two button handsets

Depending on the chair that is purchased you may have different options that might include:

  • A Single Tilt in Space, with or without rise function.
  • An Independent Backrest Recline and Leg Rest Elevation only, with or without a rise function.

2. Dual motor mechanisms with four button handsets

If a wider range of movement is required, than is provided by a single motor system, then a Dual motor mechanism is usually chosen.  The choices are:

  • Dual Motor Tilt in Space with Independent Backrest Recline and Leg Rest Elevation, with rise function.
  • Standard Dual Motor offering Independent Backrest and Leg Rest movements, with or without a rise function.

Specialist Four Motor Mechanism

On the Arden, our Bariatric Chair, we do have a specialist four motor mechanism with six button handset with independent Tilt in Space, Leg Rest, Back Rest and rise functions.

Feature Movements

From a health perspective the movements are extremely important and health professionals will assess the level of importance when evaluating the movement feature aligned to the health condition being treated.  As an overview:

Tilt in Space

The Tilt in Space movement on the mechanisms above allows the seat to back angle to remain the same, at a constant 90º whilst the whole seating system is tilted backwards. This ensures that the angle of the hips, knees and ankles remain unaffected and the weight on the Ischial Tuberosities is reduced by redistributing the weight through the back. This constant angle also prevents shear and friction during movement.

This feature can also help when transferring someone in a sling as it can support better pelvic positioning by using gravity to position the user in the back of the chair in the optimal position.

Independent Backrest Recline

This allows the user to maintain flexibility over their body’s position, particularly the amount of hip flexion, enabling them to maximise comfort as well as managing health needs.

Independent Leg Rest Elevation

This offers the user additional flexibility over positioning, allowing them to either use it in conjunction with the recline feature to create the optimal posture for their body shape.

Rise Function

As the chair rises the seat tilts forward slightly, transferring the weight to the knees whilst taking away the pressure from your hips thus allowing you to walk away more easily from the chair.

On some mechanisms the seat angle can be changed to provide further support options for standing by choosing the VAL Technology.

For more information on each of the chairs please visit the health and home chair products.