Efficacy and retention of the French-Canadian version of the wheelchair skills training program for manual wheelchair users: a randomized controlled trial
Wheelchair usage can come with a number of associated issues, including durability of the chair itself as well as impact on the user's body. It has become evident that the need for training is necessary for optimum use. Wheelchair Skills Training Program (WSTP) attempts to combine motor skills and wheelchair skills learning based on the best available evidence. Most participants had little experience in a wheelchair prior to the study and received either the French-Canadian WSTP or standard care. The French-Canadian WSTP includes 57 skills, comprised of indoor, community and advanced level skills with participants trained for 4-8 sessions by occupational therapists.
As an outcome method the Wheelchair skill test (WST) was used, designed in 1996 it has been highly ranked as a relevant test. An 18% improvement was seen for participants using WSTP. The main difference was seen in community level activities, where the WSTP group scored significantly higher results. The positive results in the control group indicated that evidence for manual wheelchair-skills training is moving from activities in ideal setting to those in the real world. But a general indication was given that practice is necessary to improve motor skills. >From: Routhier et al., Arch Phys Med Rehabil 93 (2012) 940-948. All rights reserved to the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine.