After 19-year-old Blake Simpson suffered a spinal injury in a car accident, he was told by his doctor that he would never walk again, nor would he be able to continue his hobbies of skateboarding, dirt biking or snowboarding. Blake was unwilling to believe that this was the end for his active lifestyle and every activity he enjoyed, so he decided to look for solutions.
After doing some research online, he discovered a customised wheelchair designed for use in skate parks that could take the punishment that stunts would bring. He was assisted by professional surfer Christiaan Bailey, who like Blake had suffered a spinal injury, and following a fundraiser Blake was back at the skate park with a new set of wheels.
Blake’s desire for independence continued at home as well, although the close walls and sharp corridors provided a whole new set of challenges. One of the most difficult rooms to use was the bathroom, where a plastic stool for showering did not provide enough stability and room for manoeuvring was limited.
In 2017 Showerbuddy created the Roll-In Buddy Solo (SB6w) – an affordable solution for independent self-propel individuals and the result of 2 years of research and development in collaboration with healthcare professionals and therapists. Constructed from light-weight aluminium, the Roll-In Buddy Solo can be assembled tool-free, is durable and will remain rust-free for years to come.
Four seating options allow for use with cushions and a closed front, or with right, left and front commode openings to adjust to the user’s position. A safety belt comes as standard across wither the chest or lap and quick-release armrests exclusive to the Showerbuddy brand allow for effortless transfers.
Blake Simpson has tested and regularly uses the Roll-In Buddy Solo, commenting that “[the] SB6 has brought back the independence and relaxation of taking showers. Being on wheels and having thick cushioning, I can move around wherever I need to and no longer worry about damaging my skin. Thanks SB for taking the stress out of showering and making it something I can actually enjoy!”