Injuries From Pushing Wheelchairs | Helpful Guide

Is it normal to have Injuries from pushing wheelchairs? Well yes, pushing a wheelchair can lead to some serious wheelchair injuries and problems if you don’t follow some basic rules and tips.

Those tips and rules are properly defined in the article below.

A wheelchair caregiver pushes a wheelchair all day long which definitely affects their health and can hurt their body and sometimes that leads to some serious injuries.

Those of those injuries can be really dangerous and can also affect the wheelchair caregiver’s mobility.

Below is the article you will find on how to prevent getting injured from pushing a wheelchair and also how you got it in the first place. So without further dew let’s dive into.

injuries from pushing wheelchairs

Injuries From Pushing Wheelchairs:

Being a wheelchair caregiver is not that easy and it will affect your body and your health over course of time.

Pushing wheelchair down hill can be good and enjoyable for the patient but it may affect the wheelchair assistant really badly.

The wheelchair caregiver or assistant can hurt and injure himself/herself if there is something wrong with the wheelchair are don’t have the proper equipment.

There are things you do to save yourself from getting injuries from pushing a wheelchair.

First, we describe what causes the injuries and then we describe what the injuries are for those who push a wheelchair and also how to fix it not injured anyone.

Or you can get yourself an easy to push wheelchair which is the other way around. So, let’s dive into it.

Maintain Wheelchair:

Having a faulty wheelchair is the cause of a lot of problems and most of that problems can lead the caregiver to a lot of injuries.

The faulty wheelchairs mean that their brakes don’t work properly, the wheels are loose, the tires are either damaged or flat and the upholstery is totally worn out.

All of the above problems in a wheelchair affect you differently means if the tires are flat then you will use extra force to push the wheelchair which not only affects you but also damages the wheelchair too.

This is why you need to keep maintaining the wheelchair from time to time to prevent yourself from getting injured.

Getting Back Pain:

If the user has a wheelchair that is heavy then there is a chance that the wheelchair caregiver might have back pain from pushing that heavy wheelchair.

The need to get the patient a lightweight wheelchair because there are weight limits for pushing a wheelchair that not only help the assistant or caregiver to push it but the user also easily can propel it by themselves.

Walking Long Distances:

Pushing a wheelchair for a long distance doesn’t seem a bad thing, well it can affect both the wheelchair user and its caregiver.

If you travel with a wheelchair as a caregiver then there is a chance that you may hurt your lower back and end up with ankle sprains and Achilles tendinopathy.

Cause of most of these diseases are pushing heavy wheelchairs and for too long without any rest. If you want to avoid these types of injuries then you should use a lightweight wheelchair and take a break from pushing the wheelchair for a while.

Transferring Patient:

Most wheelchair users who use wheelchairs for their daily routine are unbaled to move from wheelchair to bed which is why it’s on the wheelchair caregiver means who pushes the wheelchair to transfer from wheelchair to bed and vice versa.

When you need the patient from a wheelchair to a car or to bed the patient all weight is upon the wheelchair assistant which is he needs to be careful and also needs to do it according to a wheelchair to be bed procedure otherwise he would injure him/herself.

The transferring can hurt their musculoskeletal strain by transferring patients several times a day no matter if it’s a wheelchair to shower chair or to bed.

Pushing Heavy Wheelchair:

Pushing a wheelchair doesn’t seem to have any problem but it does not only for elders but also for wheelchair-normal people.

By pushing a heavy-weight wheelchair, you may have the risk of getting injured with disk, elbow, spine, and overall back injuries. The wheelchair weight also depends upon the place means the area you pushing.

This means if you push the wheelchair on a plane and smooth floor then it will roll smoothly and doesn’t require any extra force but if you push it on the carpet or any other uneven surface then you need extra force.

For bumpy roads, you can get rough a wheelchair big wheeled wheelchair that helps you smooth roll through rough and bumpy roads.

To roll smoothly on the carpet and narrow doorways you need a wheelchair that is suitable for narrow doorways.

How to Push a Wheelchair Safely

how to push a wheelchair safely

After knowing the injuries of pushing a wheelchair now you may ask how to push a wheelchair safely so that not hurt the caregiver or assistant and also the patient.

Warn the Patient When You Let Go:

This is very important that you need to tell the patient whether you let it go or not and especially when the wheelchair is in a slanted area. So you need to be careful which for both of you.

Aware of the Surroundings:

This is also important to know your surroundings all the time. You also need to look at what type of road is coming, so you don’t catch up on uneven surfaces and the wheelchair gets tip over or stuck in some sort of mud. That won’t be good for both, the caregiver and the patient.

Be Mindful When Pushing Wheelchair:

Whenever you push the wheelchair in a public place you may be mind full of the surrounding that not to hit someone with your wheelchair because this may hurt both, the patient and the person whom you hit. You also need to not hit any car with your wheelchair.

Apply the Brakes When you Stop the Wheelchair.

This is one of the most important safety features when you push a wheelchair. You also need to apply the brakes when you stop the wheelchair. This helps you prevent wheelchairs from moving on their own when in a down-slop area which can be really dangerous for patients.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What Muscles Does Pushing a Wheelchair Work?

The main muscles that are used in pushing a wheelchair are the deltoid anterior, pectoralis major, and triceps brachii. The caregiver used more than that. They used a lot of muscles than regular wheelchair users.

What are Common Wheelchair Injuries?

There are different injuries that happen from wheelchair use. Include sprains and strains, contusions, nerve damage, soft tissue injuries, and elbow, arm, and forearm injuries are some of the common injuries.

Should You Push Someone in a Wheelchair?

First, you should ask him or her to push their wheelchair and you never touch someone’s wheelchair without asking them or without their permission. If they agree then you should push their wheelchair as long as you can and they want you to.

Can Pushing a Wheelchair Cause Back Pain?

Well Yes Pushing a wheelchair can cause back pain if it’s heavy or you push the wheelchair all day long. Pushing a wheelchair on rough terrain very often also causes back pain for the caregiver.


Wheelchair pushing can cause injuries like back pain, ankle pain, etc. and which can be minimized by taking precautions.

To prevent the wheelchair from getting Injuries from pushing wheelchairs first you need to follow the above rules and tips.

If you have any questions about how to push a wheelchair or wheelchair propulsion patterns then ask in the comment section and we’ll be glad to answer them.

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