Having to bend to tie shoe laces can cause pain and difficulty
Tying shoelaces can be a daily struggle for many people. Having to bend and stretch can be uncomfortable and cause pain, whilst also taking an inconvenient amount of time to do so. However, there are gadgets and types of shoe laces to help you avoid this. Elasticated and stretchy laces are the best known solutions, they help you transform your everyday lace-up shoes into slip-ons, to provide comfort and ease of use. How do they work and what are the alternatives?
How Do Elastic Laces for Shoes Work?
The stretch lace fabric of these shoe laces are threaded and tied in exactly the same way as ordinary laces. However, the elasticated fabric provides tension once tied, and it it this that makes sure your shoes remain tight and secure whilst wearing them.
When using elastic shoelaces, you only ever have to tie your shoelaces once the first time you apply them. After this your lace-ups work as slip-ons, permanently removing the need for you to bend and stretch. Eventually they may still come undone though.
Greeper Shoe Laces for Disability
Average elasticated shoe laces can easily break
There are many simplified versions of the elastic shoe lace on the market, most of which offer a temporary solution to the problem.
Cheaper elastic laces can lose their stretch over a short amount of time. Most importantly elastic laces often come undone whilst you’re wearing your shoes. This can make shoes uncomfortable and give you a less secure feeling whilst being worn as well as being a trip hazard!
This is why Greeper have designed an innovative and inclusive alternative to elastic shoe laces. Greepers are designed using high quality traditional polyester laces but have a simple fitting system that provides toggle that prevent the laces ever coming undone “Once applied, always tied”.
Greeper laces are ultimately more durable and comfortable than elastic shoe laces, they give better support as they use traditional laces that do not stretch.
After the initial application, Greeper shoelaces are forever tied. Unlike elasticated laces Greeper shoe laces do not rely on the tension of elastic to keep the shoes fastened. Instead an ingenious toggle system allows you to tighten or loosen the laces quickly and easily, whilst giving you piece of mind that they will always stay fastened.
Greeper Easy Fasten Shoelaces Vs Elasticated Shoe Laces
Reviewers the world over have made comparisons between elasticated laces and the innovative design of the Greeper shoelace. “220 Triathlon” magazine recently voted the Greeper Lace as “editors choice” and many world-renowned athletes champion the Greeper lace over other elasticated brands. It’s fair to say that when elasticated laces are pitted-against Greeper Laces, Greeper “out-run” the competition every time!
The benefits of Greeper laces vs elasticated shoe laces:
Greeper Laces never come undone – ensuring complete shoe support and comfort, reducing the risk of injury, increasing performance.
Quick and easy to fasten – Simple toggle system allows you to loosen and tighten your shoes in seconds, without ever untying your laces.
Fully adjustable – Eliminates overly-long lace loops, provides the ultimate fit and promotes foot health, especially for sports.
Polyester laces – Elastic shoe laces can become weak and break whilst running – the use of traditional-style polyester laces removes the fear of laces ever breaking or loosing tension.
Much better support to the foot. The laces themselves do not stretch, therefore the shoe supports the foot much better than laces where the laces are stretching during movement.
Time-saving Sports Laces
Caroline Steffan – ITU Long Distance Triathlon World Championship title-holder, wearing Greeper Laces.
One of the other pros of Greeper Laces is the time-saving aspect. Greeper Laces benefit from allowing you to quick-tighten your laces. If you are the sporting type, enjoying competitive sport – Greeper Laces can knock much needed seconds off you run-time.
The lace lock system allows super-swift lace tightening and the secure fitting provides security throughout your run.
This eliminates the need to stop-start to fix loose laces, and stops extra foot movement that often happens using elastic laces.
Once you have set up your Greeper Laces properly, they will help to shave those precious pit-stop seconds off your run time.
We’ve found a review on amazon by a customer who purchased Greeper Laces for her sports-loving husband:
Bought these for my hubby as he is a keen triathlon competitor. Just what he required to save himself a few valuable seconds… Thank you.
Greeper Always Tied Shoelaces Used by Everyone
Although championed by professional athletes and amateur sports fans alike, Greeper laces are an affordable inclusive design that can be used by anyone.
The bright colours and design of the Flats range of Greeper Laces are ideal for children’s shoes
Greeper laces come in a number of different styles and colours. The “Sports” design being perfect for all types of athletic sport-shoe and the “Hikers” design ideal for more outdoor-style footwear and activities.
The designers at Greeper understand the need for an everyday, easy to apply lace for everyone, including people with impairments or disability. That is why they have produced a number of non-sport styles to assist those who simply need a lace solution for work or school.
The “Execs” and “Flats” ranges are the ultimate in inclusive design. These can be worn with smart dress-shoes, school shoes or trainers, yet still providing the same comfort and security of the more athletic designs.
Stay Tied Laces For Children
Many parents find the white and black sports or exec laces ideal for children at school. It removes the need for children to retie their laces or the danger of the shoes coming off or even being taken off (!) by children with disabilities or behavioural problems. Like this recent feedback from Amazon: “bought these for my son who has autism and struggles to tie laces and they are perfect as he can do them on his own making him as independant as possible.”
Getting a bra on with one hand is very difficult without the help of a Bra Angel
The Buckingham Bra Angel
This week we thought we would feature a Bra Angel review. Not to be confused with the The Bra Angel Bra Repair Kit : instant bra repair kit that is a also available, the Buckingham Bra Angel is a gadget to help with putting on a bra with one hand
Dressing and personal care are among the most intimate and private areas in somebody’s life and the need for support in this can be upsetting and cause anxiety. At Living with Disability, we have searched to find a range of products which support individuals with their independence in personal care including the Uriwell Range and the Denham Brush and the latest product we’ve discovered is the Buckingham BraAngel. At the best of times fastening and unfastening bras can be difficult and it can become even more taxing if you live with a disability or injury. Women living with upper limb restrictions including weaknes following a stroke, arthiritis or permanent damage after trauma can find drawing together the ends of the bra very difficult and then realise they need support getting dressed. The Buckingham Bra Angel can even be used successfully by those who have the use of one arm or have had an amputation.
The Buckingham Bra Angel Dressing Aid
The BraAngel Dressing Aid has been specifically developed with this problem in mind by a trained and experienced occupational therapist. The aid is designed to provide support whether it’s needed for just a short period after a fracture or for longer more permanent usage.
As the image shows the BraAngel holds one end of the bra tightly whilst the other end can be brought around the body and attached to the secure end. As you can see the BraAngel is comfortably positioned around the neck, between the cleavage and comes with a useful soft chin pad to allow you to maintain its position whilst clearly seeing the fastenings so you can easily put on the bra.
The features of the BraAngel cannot be underestimated and as a truly universal design, it should be possible to use it with all different styles and types of bra and all collar sizes. The product is designed to allow for easy discreet storage and should require next to no cleaning as it’s designed with no obvious dirt traps. The product is 100% free of latex allowing those with allergies to use it when necessary and the heart shaped chin pad allows for comfort and extra functionality when securing the device.
Bra Angel Review
Using the Bra Angel
The Bra Angel has it’s fans and was reviewed recently by the ’British Mobility Scooters’ blog who said “The Bra-Angel holds one end of the brassiere securely whilst the other end is brought round the body and attached together. It even enables those who only have the use of one arm to be able to put on their brassiere independently.”
An original, ingenious idea that can give women back their independence and privacy when dressing, the BraAngel is truly an innovation. To find out more and purchase your own, click to buy in confidence from the Equ4l.com webstore.
Searching for “Disabled Shoe laces “? Greeper laces are always tied, useful for top sportsmen and people with disabilities a truly universal design.
With the Paralympics coming up we thought we would feature a neat gadget used by top athletes like World Ironman Champion Chrissie Wellington MBE.
Shoelaces as used by top sportswoman Chrissie Wellington MBE
At Living With Disability we were really excited when we first heard about greeper laces as we realised the difference they could make to so many lives. You see, Greeper Shoe Laces carry the tagline ‘One Applied, Always Tied’ and you can adjust, loosen or do anything you need with your shoe laces without every needing to tie and untie them. This really is an innovative, yet simple creation which we had to share.
There are many groups of people living with disabilities who can significantly benefit from Greeper Shoe Laces. Firstly, we thought of those living with a range of learning disabilities which have made tying shoe laces very difficult. In the past, many people living with certain learning disabilities were seen only wearing Velcro shoes but with Greeper Shoe Laces, the range of shoes to choose from is wider and more accessible. Secondly, Greeper Shoe Laces are a great idea for children with autism who frequently remove their shoes, as there’s no need to retie and they can be put back on in seconds. We also believe Greeper Shoe Laces would be a great idea for anybody living with painful conditions such as arthritis which make bending and stretching difficult. You can simple slip your shoes on and off and the laces remain tied. People who are overweight or have back pain can also benefit as the laces remove the need for bending of reaching down to retie them during the day.
Once applied they stay on all day long
Greeper Shoe Laces require a little initial fitting but once it’s done, they’re there to stay. They come in a huge range of colours and two different lengths, so you can fit them in your trainers or boots. The really ‘inclusive design’ wow factor is the fact that they can be used in any shoes or training boots, removing the need to find expensive specialist footwear and allowing athletes to choose the absolutely most suitable shoes for the event. They’re a great help and remove one more of those pesky daily tasks which can become a difficult chore. This informational video shoes exactly how Greeper Shoe Laces work:
Range of Greeper Laces
There are several styles in the Greeper lace range. No matter what the occasion or task, there is a Greeper lace in a style and colour to fit your needs and tastes.
Sports Greeper laces in Neon Pink
Sports Greeper Laces
Greeper Sports laces are ideal for all types of sports shoes. Whether you enjoy tennis, running or golf; the Sports range are an oval type like the ones usually included with running shoes. They are also perfect for school shoes such as smart footwear or plimsoles used for gym.
Sports Greeper Laces are available in the following colours:
Beige and Brown Hiker-style Greeper Laces
Hiker Greeper Laces
Greeper Hiker Laces are ideal for outdoor hiking and walking boots. They are longer than any of the other styles (150cm). This allows for the extra length needed when threading through the eyelets of boots. Greeper Hiker Laces feature a durable yet lightweight nylon toggle with high tension springs. This ensures that your laces will stay tight no matter the incline or conditions.
Hiker Greeper Laces are available in the following colour combinations:
Smart and stylish – Black Greeper Execs laces
Execs Greeper Laces
The Execs range of Greeper Laces are a stylish and formal option for smart shoes and occasions. Perfect for classic men’s shoes, business footwear and both girl’s and boy’s school shoes. Execs Greeper Laces are available in either Brown or Black.
Modern and Fresh – The Greeper Flats range in Orange
Flats Greeper Laces
The Flats range of Greeper Laces are most popular amongst younger sporting-types. They are 10mm wide, flat laces that are usually found in less-formal sports footwear. They are ideal for pumps and “Converse” skater style footwear, and are available in with either the SureGrip or Sports toggle.
Flats Greeper Laces are available in the following colours:
At Living with Disability we are particularly excited about this product because it really is a brand new idea and something we think thousands of people could benefit from. If you’re interested in making a purchase, just click in the button below to visit Equipped 4 Life – Equ4l.com – a new boutique store selling the most innovative and inclusive designs available:
At Living with Disability we have previously discussed the importance of dignity and independence for personal care and hygiene processes and have looked at items which supported this process. Today, we’re looking more closely at the range of adjustable shower chairs on the market and how they can be a huge help if you don’t have an adapted bathroom but need support using your shower or bath.
Shower Chairs make personal care dignified
Adjustable shower chairs are a great option as you can position them at the right level for you to ensure you can shower easily, comfortable and without risk of falling or slipping. The range of height adjustable shower chairs make showering safer and less stressful if you live with a condition which affects your mobility. Modern adjustable shower chairs allow for more comfort and the newer, more modern designs are more compact and lightweight than previous models. Some models even feature wheels making transfer to and from the bedroom or dressing room much simpler too. The lightweight and compact models make supporting someone living with disabilities slightly easier too as providing personal care becomes much easier whilst using a specifically designed piece of equipment.
Showering and bathing are very private elements of your personal care routine and any support you need needs to be given with dignity. Additional apparatus such as adjustable shower chairs can really make the process less uncomfortable. Customers who have already purchased their chair sing their praises, recommending them for being both lightweight and sturdy and providing much needed support in homes without adapted bathrooms.
This video from a company specialising in Multiple Sclerosis relief shows clearly how shower chairs can be correctly used:
There are a huge range of shower chairs on the market but all the reputable branded models are of equal quality. If you click in the box below you’ll be able to purchase one of the most competitively priced models on the market:
Shower Chair with Adjustable Height
Shower Perching Stool with Arms Adjustable Height
Clean Shower & Toilet Chair – Adjustable Height
Extra Wide Shower & Commode Chair – Adjustable Height with Detachable Arms
Shower Chair With Back – Lightweight, Adjustable Height And Integral Handles
Travel shower chair a best seller at DisabledGear.com
The shower chair from DisabledGear is a superior shower chair and is easily folded away when not required. A real boon for short term storage and carrying it with you, it uses a patented folding design. The light blue foam padded back support is comfy and firm for resting against and the non-slip foam seat has a convenient U-shaped hole for er.. convenience
The armrests are also padded with foam for comfortable support when seated or rising and they also reposition out of the way to help you get onto the seat. The foam arms can be locked down by a push-release catch for peace of mind. The clever shape and ergonomics of the shower chair ensures that it is firmly anchored to the floor whilst transferring your weight to another chair or surface – something that other makes and models cannot always achieve.
The legs are height adjustable and have ferrules to stop the shower chair from slipping or moving while it is being used. An aluminium frame means that it is one of the lightest models available is fully resistant to rust or corrosion.
Seat size 406 x 406mm (16 x 16′). Height adjustable to max.483mm / 19″. Weight 5kg. Price £133 Ex VAT
If you buy from Guy you know you have a guarantee of quality and top class customer service and the backing of the ethical and service led KanduGroup.com of which he is chairman.
Adjust the height of your furniture in a few short seconds
If you need to adjust the height of your furniture or bed because of back pain or hoisting, these furniture raisers could be a big help.
There could be many reasons behind your need to modify and adapt your furniture, be that your bed or sofas and it’s understandable that the cost of brand new beds and sofas is not something that’s readily affordable most of the time. Whether you live with back pain or related issues, or perhaps have a mobility related condition that means you need your furniture at a more easy to access level, Langham Furniture Raisers can help. Simple to design and easy to fit, these small adapters can make all the difference and received positive feedback when exhibited at the Naidex New Product Showcase this year.
A Range of Styles and Designs
Langham Raisers fitted to a Sofa
The Langham Furniture Raisers can simply be attached to the feet of your existing sofa or bed, giving it some additional height and aiding your access to your furniture. They can even be used to raise tables and other furniture if necessary. What’s more, they come in a range of designs which mean you can match them to your existing furniture with both multipurpose and Wooden Cube Style Raisers available. They come in different heights so you can gain up to an extra 4″ on your furniture’s original height. What’s more the latest design come with SureFix technology which is a unique double grip design which ensures a safe and secure hold. As this video shows, there are many ways these items can be used:
The range of designs and styles means you don’t have to install some clinical or badly designed product into your home and you can actually find designs which suit the décor of your home and you won’t even notice them after a short while.
Holiday away? Take a set of furniture raisers with you!
Many people worry about the height of beds and chair while they are away on holiday. These furniture risers are small and light enough to take with you when you travel abroad on take a shorter trip away from home. Keep a spare set in the boot of the car!
With many happy customers already benefiting from their furniture raisers if you feel you need a little height and don’t want to fork out for a brand new three piece suite or bed, this is a fantastic alterative:
Raise Its – 8 Pack Furniture Risers – Black – For the Bed, Desk, Table or Dresser – Great for Eliminating Back Pain or f
Raise Its – 8 Pack Furniture Risers – Black – For the Bed, Desk, Table or Dresser – Great for Eliminating Back Pain or f
Helping in the bathroom: The Buckingham Easywipe Toilet Aid
We were pleased to see the Buckingham Easywipe featured on ITV’s “This Morning” today, where it got an enthusiastic reception. If you would like to find out more about the Easywipe Toilet aid read on
The Buckingham Easywipe Instructions
Buckingham Healthcare are a family business with a real knowledge for disability and a genuine desire to create products that help people. The husband and wife, team Simon and Chris have a background in occupational therapy and mental health. One of their most popular products is the Easywipe, a delicate subject but an aid that really helps people who are overweight, have back pain or are of restricted growth.
The Easywipe was born of designer Chris’s experience as a OT and finding that people who had back problems or shorter arms were unable to reach around when in the toilet. This embarrassing problem is not a funny one, and the Easywipe toilet aid is a brilliant aid to cleanliness and dignity.
The Buckingham Easywipe is a patented design and a product that had to be created as there was no real solution to this problem. It’s a new and unique invention which overcomes all the drawbacks found in existing devices and ensures better personal hygiene for those who have difficulty with reaching.
The Buckingham Easywipe was ergonomically designed after significant research and is designed to be functional for anyone with limited dexterity and reach. Both its shape and mechanism are patented and it is able to securely grip toilet tissue and release it cleanly with no problems. It removes the need to touch the paper after use which is a huge development in technology in this field and means your personal hygiene is not compromised.
This product is one of their most innovative and original and the Buckingham Easywipe is designed to ensure ease of use and it is also easy to keep clean with no obvious dirt traps so it requires minimal maintenance.
The Compact Easywipe
Since developing the original Easywipe, they have gone on to further improve the design of this toilet aid also have produced Buckingham Easiwipe Compact Bottom Wiper
which is fully foldable, comes with its own hard carry case and can be kept on your person when out and about discreetly. Reviews for this product are glowing and have consistently received five star ratings with customers describing it as “just what was needed” and “by far the best cleaning aid on the market.”
Telestik Portable Grabber – Guest post from Eleanor Lisney
We spotted this useful and interesting review of a telescopic portable grabber from Eleanor Lisney on twitter. Eleanor runs a market stall boutique on Coventry Market. She sells products that she has personally tried and tested for their usefulness and quality. If you are ever that way, please say hello to her. She is very friendly person who knows a thing or too about disability!
Here we are pleased to guest post Eleanors review of the Telestik:
Eleanor runs a Living Aid Boutique Stall at Coventry Market, pop by and say Hi!
“I am always excited when new stock arrive. Today is no exception, Mr G’s Batty sock and stocking aid arrived (he wanted something to help him put on his socks) and Mrs C’s foam handle for the knork as well. However I have also ordered some telestiks. I’ve never seen anybody with them before. I originally look them up for Donna because her mobile kept falling on the floor and it was difficult to get it up again. But they look so useful I had no hesitation in opening one up for myself.
I had great fun trying it out on picking up keys. credit cards, pieces of paper. But best of all I could put it on a strap accessory and hang it on my wheelchair along with my brolly. Now I know that when I am out I won’t have to worry if I drop things when I am on my own. I wished I had it with me the other day when I dropped a pound coin but there was no one around for me to ask for help. My grabber is a bit too unwieldy to carry around on my wheelchair.
this is what the manufacturers say -
TeleStik® is the newly designed portable reacher that does what the others don’t. TeleStik®allows you to retrieve hard-to-reach items without requiring significant grip strength or dexterity. And it gets in tighter places than other reachers because of its sleek design and clever sticking mechanisms.
If you suffer from arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, or any other condition that makes it difficult to operate a traditional reacher, TeleStik® is your answer.
For those tight squeezes, like behind the desk where there’s no room to open and close a claw,TeleStik® will fish your telephone or computer line, where the others can’t.
Here is the video which I found interesting because I’ve not seen anyone with one here before.
It says that it’s for people who cannot use ordinary grabbers but I am beginning to love mine and I am already thinking up new uses for it and its going everywhere with me!”
The advancement of technology continues to speed off at an alarming rate and as each new product is developed, there are new ways that people living with disabilities can gain independence and fulfilment from their lives with less support from others. Now, the development of robotics has been seen more in sci-fi movies and books but it’s not longer a thing of the past, innovative robot vacuum cleaners have been developed and are available for general purchase.
Robot vacuum cleaners are a development which could significantly help those living with disabilities who find the general vacuum cleaner too heavy, too difficult to grip or have problems with bending and stretching. Rather than relying on support from carers or family, a robot vacuum cleaner can do the job for you on its own.
Samsung vs iRobot
There are two main brands of robot vacuum cleaner on the market and both have their advantages and disadvantages. This video shows in depth which model benefits from which qualities and also their strengths and weaknesses:
As the video shows the iRobot Roomba is the original design, complete with all the features you think you may need in a robot vac but then along comes the Samsung NaviBot.
Now, the Navibot seems to be a newer, more technically advanced and highly developed model but on testing, it’s possible to see how both products have their strengths and how according to CNET the original design is much stronger than the new, apparently more technically advanced development.
The Navibot is fantastic for thorough and in depth cleaning and it’s vision mapping technology means it knows where it’s already been and won’t spin in circles but it does struggle with obstacles. The Roomba may take a little more time to get things done and may keep going over the same spot but the job will get done and the original technology proves to be superior in most instances.
If you’re interested in finding out more about either product, click in the boxes below:
There are many essential items for your daily life which aid independence and help with all those normal daily tasks that may be a struggle at times. One of these items is the Handi Reacher, a great but simple invention which can help with reaching and grabbing things you may need. This tweeter puts across exactly what their Handi Reacher means to them:
@enabledby Mine'd be my long handled grabby thing. I don't know what else to call it, but good for short arses like me! #disabilitygadgets
Handi Reachers come in a range of different lengths and can be used for all manner of things from picking up your glasses when you drop them on the floor, to reaching out of reach books or DVDs. The original Handi Reacher is also designed with a magnetic head which can pick up small metallic items, for example your keys or a knork and you can actually buy dressing hooks to attach to your Reacher if you need an extra helping hand when getting dressed.
A Handi Reacher in action
The jaw of the Handi Reacher is extremely easy to open and close and doesn’t need a huge amount of pressure which is great if you have dexterity problems and it the jaw can also be rotated 360º which stops you from having to turn your wrists which is extremely beneficial if you have a joint condition.
You can use your Handi Reacher in the home, in the garden or even out and about. It’s a versatile and intuitively designed product which is great for helping around the home but can also be great for garden usage. If you want to pick up loose leaves or waste for your yard, you no longer need to ask for help as your Handi Reacher can be your aid.
There are a range of different reacher brands on the market and finding the one which suits your need is a personal decision. This video shows the range of reachers available from one particular brand:
The low-tech gadgets in our lives are sometimes the most important. Imagine trying to eat without a spoon or drive your car without its wheels for example. When living with disabilities, it is sometimes the most basic design which can make the most difference. Today, we’re looking at long handled shoe horns and how they can make life just that little bit easier.
Why would I need a long handled shoe horn?
A long handled shoe horn is an essential piece of kit if you need a little assistance putting on or taking off your shoes and like this tweeter says, they can be a real lifesaver:
Long handled shoe horns are a great idea for anybody who suffers from any sort of joint condition, chronic pain or difficulty bending over. It’s the extra helping hand you need sometimes when you need to get yourself into your shoes and also, after a long day at work or leisure, taking them off again. This informational video shows exactly how one particular brand of long handled shoe horn works:
Once you own a long handled shoe horn, you will wonder how you managed without it and it’s a great way of adding an extra element of independence to your daily routine. Once you’ve worked out the knack of using your shoe horn, you’ll be able to slip in and out of your shoes with ease.
There are a range of different long handled shoe horns on the market, traditional “jockey” style shoe horns are embellished with lots of extras that can make them harder to use so it’s a good idea to look in depth at the product you choose. The price range varies from product to product but you can get a great quality, functional long handled shoe horn for a reasonable price no trouble.
We like to find new gadgets or uses of existing products that help people with disabilities. We don't like clinical or stigmatising looking ugly products that make your home look like a hospital ward!
Please leave a comment if you would like to submit a review or suggest a product. You can always talk to us on twitter @lwdisability or facebook. We love to be offered guest posts and happily include your bio with blog link or for a chosen cause or charity.