Help With Gardening For Disabled People
– Gardening is a wonderful activity that benefits disabled people. There are many different types of disabilities people can suffer from, so we won’t get into those specifics. Some people are in the rehabilitative phase of their condition. These special people need to improve on some vital areas in order for them to live a good quality of life. These areas include but are not limited to emotional health, communication, confidence, and physical skills. If you want to see a small list of tools, designed to help with gardening for disabled people, then you can have a look at the article I wrote here.
Gardening for disabled people offers many benefits. According to research, disabled people who practice gardening regularly improve their social skills. Their memory and learning capacities increase as evidenced by higher attention spans and better numerical skills. In terms of physical wellness, disabled people gain remarkable improvements in balance and muscle strength. They are able to feel more positive about themselves and the world around them.
There are many ways to make gardening a worthwhile activity for people with special needs. These are easy-to-implement strategies that can make a huge difference in their overall recovery. So lets look at some ways to help with gardening for disabled people.
1. Simple Stretching and Warming Up Before Starting
Before disabled gardeners start their work, they need to stretch and warm up in order to loosen their muscles and avoid strain.
For people who are wheelchair-bound, this can be done by interlocking both hands behind the neck and moving the elbows out sideways. Stretching the neck by flexion and hyperextension also helps. For both arms, they are positioned on the sides of the body and bent slowly to the right and left.
2. Have Tools and Equipment Readily Available
Help disabled gardeners in getting their gardening tools ready by making a checklist of the materials needed for the day. Assemble them in one place to prevent these people from making frequent trips from one area of the garage to another. This can be physically and mentally exhausting to them.
Also make sure that the items are comfortably within reach – above the waist level for weelchair-bound gardeners. This prevents falls and unwarranted injuries from happening. For ambulatory people, make sure that kneelers and stools are widely available.
3. Make Watering Plants Easier From A Wheelchair
Tin watering cans can are difficult to carry for people sitting on wheelchairs. Provide them with plastic watering cans that weigh lighter and have flat sides. These are easier to carry and prevent a person’s arm from straining.
When watering plants using a hose, select for disabled gardeners a spray that’s easy to use. A long reach spray lance helps these people water hanging plants and other far plants effectively.
4. Ensure A Safe Gardening Environment
For people who have heart, joint and back problems, providing a safe place where they can take breaks while gardening is important. Sturdy benches and flat surfaces for wheelchairs in shaded areas prevent dehydration during the summer especially for the elderly.
Pathways have to be wide enough for wheelchairs and walkers to pass through. Remove all obstacles from the pathway which may cause slips and falls among gardeners with limited eyesight.
For disabled gardeners who have neurological problems (post-stroke patients), provide a risk-free walking surface by painting paths with a non-skid finish. Have handrails readily available as well.
5. Secure Adaptive Gardening Tools For More Comfort
For a disabled gardener who does not have a strong grip, making handles of gardening tools thicker allows the person to hold them better and perform gardening tasks easier. To do this, simply pad handles using custom foam handle grips or a DIY grip out of foam (which is a lot cheaper).
Wheelchair-bound gardeners and those with trouble bending can benefit from longer handles. To help them access farther areas of the garden while using a leaf rake, a broomstick handle can serve as an extension. Tie it to the leaf rake handle using waterproof tape.
Gardening for disabled people allows vulnerable persons to have a better way of living. Helping them in gardening by modifying their environment is a simple task to accomplish. By doing it, their lives are improved in a holistic way – physically, emotionally, mentally, and socially.