Many outdoor power chairs claim king of the hill rights, but the TracFab chair made by two cousins in rural Pennsylvania may be the rightful heir. The cousins’ brainchild was initially invented for their ailing grandmother. Wanting to help grandma explore the family property, they installed rubber tracks on her scooter.
This design eventually morphed into the modern-day TracFab, which has rubberized tracks and either a 30-inch or 36-inch base. It also has a model that runs on gasoline, making it powerful and long-lasting in the energy department. The 30-inch model can also fit in most vans, which is unheard of in the 4×4 chair market. Other noteworthy features include its exclusive patent-pending adjustable seat suspension, which changes “on the fly” depending on the surface you’re on.
The TracFab also has removable armrests to make transferring a cinch — a nice touch to see on such a beefy machine. Cost: $11,995 (30-inch model) to $13,995 (36-inch model).
Learn more: www.tracfab.com
The Great Adventures of Joe Stone
When Joe Stone, 30, was a younger man, his heart was drawn to the mountains, so he left the flatlands of Minnesota for Montana. “I was opened to mountain biking, fly fishing, skydiving and eventually speed flying, and my goal was to always push myself as hard and far as I could.”
On August 13, 2010, his love of speed flying — where you use your feet to jump off mountainsides to catch air, wearing wings — bit back, and he crashed while doing a barrel roll. “I made a mistake or two, which created line twists and sent me spiraling down until I crashed at about 50 mph.” He broke several vertebrae and sustained spinal cord damage at C7.
After being flown back home to Minnesota, he threw himself into rehab with his main goal to be as independent as possible. “After about seven months I felt like I hit a wall in therapy and realized I needed to continue my rehab on my own.” He also started a handcycling regimen that made it clear adapted outdoor recreation was his therapy of choice.
Stone’s next goal was to hand cycle the famed Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park, which he completed on his one-year SCI anniversary, after 14 hours of cycling. Since then, mountain biking has become another one of his top adapted sports.
After his injury he formed the Joe Stone Foundation — with a mission to merge adaptive sports with able-bodied sports whenever possible — and last year the foundation partnered with the Wydaho Rendezvous Mountain Bike Festival to bring adaptive athletes to the event. He also does motivational speaking.
His secret to moving on? Endless progression. “This can be achieved with an open mind and a positive attitude. If you put all your focus on keeping an open mind and positive attitude, happiness will find you.”
Meet Joe at thejoestonefoundation.com
Real Life Tinder
It seems anyone who is single has tried Tinder, the popular dating app, and this includes singles with SCI. Kristen Parisi, 30, a paraplegic, gave it a whirl … and many men split once they realized she had a spinal cord injury. Instead of taking it sitting down, she spoke out about her experience for Cosmopolitan. Read it here: http://bit.ly/1JWdxTu