Universal Design Guidelines for Fitness Equipment
DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): People with disabilities have increased health risks as a result of a sedentary lifestyle. Limited access to fitness equipment is a primary barrier to physical activity and a significant environmental barrier to the health and well-being of people with disabilities. This project will develop design, construction and installation guidelines for the universal design of aerobic and strength training equipment. Currently, no guidelines or information is available for manufacturers wishing to incorporate universal design principles into their product line. These products will define the standards of practice to ensure that most people with disabilities have access to commercially available, "mainstream" fitness equipment. This research will also develop a model step-by-step process for the modification of existing equipment, a system for identifying universal design products to consumers and data on the cost-benefits of universal design fitness equipment (UDFE). The objectives of Phase I are to: a) identify the issues and needs of key stakeholders through direct consultations, b) establish draft guidelines in conjunction with the Project Advisory Board, c) outline the feasibility and cost implications of the draft guidelines through surveys of equipment manufacturers and organizations of people with disabilities, d) develop a modification template for existing equipment; e) create a UDFE identification system that can be easily recognized by consumers, and f) establish manufacturer commitment to the implementation of the UDFE guidelines. Phase II research will establish the safety, reliability and validity of the UDFE guidelines by having manufacturers implement the guidelines with their existing products. Phase II will also examine the health impacts of guidelines implementation for people with disabilities by correlating changes in fitness with UDFE guideline compliance. Beneficial Designs, Inc. and The Center for Universal Design will ensure commercial availability of the guidelines and implementation support for manufacturers in Phase III.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Beneficial Designs, Inc.
2240 Meridian Blvd. Suite C P.O Box 69 Minden, NV 89423
Number of Employees: