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Why was the Electric Wheelchair Invented

Why was the Electric Wheelchair Invented

Physical disability is a major challenge, especially the one that makes someone unable to walk. It was even hard for people in the past because they lacked mobility devices and were confined to their homes. Otherwise, they have to rely on someone for mobility.

But the invention of the electric wheelchair is a blessing for such people. Now people can move around freely and independently. They don’t even need a caregiver or family member for any kind of mobility.

So, why was the electric wheelchair invented? Is it created to provide mobility or for some other purpose? What reason leads to its invention, and what is the history of the electric wheelchair?

In this article, we will explore the history of the electric wheelchair and the reasons why it was invented.

What is an Electric Wheelchair

An electric wheelchair, motorized wheelchair, powerchair, and electric power chair is a wheelchair that is operated with energy supplies by the batteries. The batteries provide power to motors that produce motion in the wheelchair. It is a self-propelled chair that controls using the joystick or controller.

Why Electric Wheelchair Invented – Reasons

The primary reason for inventing the electric wheelchair was to provide people with disabilities greater mobility and independence. For many people with disabilities, traditional manual wheelchairs can be difficult to operate, particularly if they have limited upper body strength or mobility.

An electric wheelchair, on the other hand, can be operated using a simple joystick or other control, making it much easier for people to move around.

In addition, electric wheelchairs are often faster and more efficient than traditional wheelchairs. This means that people with disabilities can travel longer distances in less time, making participating in activities and events outside their homes easier.

Another reason for inventing the electric wheelchair was to reduce the physical strain on caregivers. With a manual wheelchair, a caregiver must push the chair and its occupant, which can be physically demanding. An electric wheelchair, on the other hand, requires much less effort to operate, reducing the strain on caregivers and allowing people with disabilities to be more self-sufficient.

History of Electric Wheelchair

George Klein invented the first electric wheelchair in the 1950s. Klein was a Canadian engineer inspired to create the electric wheelchair after seeing injured veterans returning from World War II. It was made public in 1953.

Before that, manual wheelchairs were on the market, which obviously required a lot of physical strength to move around. The invention of a motorized wheelchair made mobility for disabled people easy.
However, Klein’s initial design was a bulky, heavy chair that could have been more practical. His invention caught the attention of others in the medical community, and over the years, the electric wheelchair is getting modified and advanced with present cutting-edge technology.

Since then, electric wheelchairs have continued to evolve, with new features such as joystick controls, suspension systems, and improved battery life.


In conclusion, the electric wheelchair was invented to provide greater mobility and independence to people with disabilities. The electric wheelchair lets them participate in a wider range of activities independently.

As technology improves, electric wheelchairs will likely become even more efficient and practical, making life easier for people with disabilities.