In recent years, the fashion industry has been changing thanks to "adaptive clothing"
Even if they have help, wheelchair users often struggle to get dressed and undressed. Elderly persons know how difficult it can be to tie shoelaces with arthritis in fingers and hands. Resourceful startups and companies have picked up on this and are bringing more and more clothing items on the market that are easier to put on and take off. They even keep up with fashion trends, offering something for every age and every taste. (Click here for an exciting 2020 interview on "Inclusive Fashion")
Enter the search term "adaptive clothing" in Google and you will get 59,600,000 instant results, which include popular brands and designers. But how does adaptive clothing differ from conventional apparel?
Lucina Zimmermann from Tamonda ® - Senioren & Spezial Bedarf (English: Adaptive Fashion for Seniors and Special Needs) details the challenges wheelchair users face when it comes to conventional clothing: "Conventional trousers are often not long enough and ride up on the leg when seated, exposing the ankle area and socks. This is especially unattractive for senior citizens who must often wear bandages or have swollen legs. Others are sensitive to cold temperatures, causing them to lose body heat faster." We can likely all relate to these issues. Who among us hasn’t been annoyed if the back of your pants moves down and exposes your back or the pant legs ride up when you sit down? This is where clothing manufacturers come to the rescue. They create pants that offer comfort in a seated position, avoid pressure points, and are easy to put on and take off. Flat, no yoke seams or pockets on the back of the pants, extra-long pant legs, wide and easy-to-grasp pull tabs and belt loops and trousers that are cut higher in the back and lower in the front are helpful aspects in this setting. Special zippers and hook-and-loop fasteners also help make dressing easier.