Wheelchair Accessible Obstacle Course
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Wheelchair Accessible Obstacle Course

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I have created a plan in PowerPoint to construct a fun temporary obstacle course for disabled children and adults that use wheelchairs or walkers. The plan includes many elements that can be used......

I have created a plan in PowerPoint to construct a fun temporary obstacle course for disabled children and adults that use wheelchairs or walkers. The plan includes many elements that can be used to set up a course. This course is not a permanent one, but one that people can construct or put together easily for a fundraiser, get together, picnic or just a day of fun at home.

For each element, I provide a list of materials, instructions on how to set it up, and discuss any safety concerns. I have tested each element before including it in the final plan.


For the last part of my project I am distributing the plans to you, disability organizations, and schools so you can use it to create obstacle courses at your events and fundraisers and share it with your families for fun activities they can do at home birthday parties or just everyday fun.

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  • 1. Wheelchair Accessible Obstacle Course By: Chessa Birrell Girl Scout Gold Award Project Troop 22288 9-29-13
  • 2. Project Inspiration • There does not seem to be enough recreational activities for children and adults with orthopedic impairments. Many people do not know how to facilitate activities for people who use wheelchairs and walkers. When you look for activities to do and search for them on the internet, they are difficult to find. When people get together with other disabled friends they need to have some fun activities to do that could be constructed quickly. • Through this plan I hope to spread awareness, educate people about this cause, and show them what they can do to help disabled people have fun. • This PowerPoint Plan shows how to construct a fun temporary obstacle course for disabled children and adults that use wheelchairs or walkers. I have found that many non-disabled children enjoy the course and some like to challenge themselves by going through the course using the crab walk or wheelbarrow. • The plan includes many elements that you can choose from to set up a course. For each course element, a list of materials and instructions on how to set it up is provided along with a discussion of any safety concerns. I have tested each element before including it in this plan. The elements try to stimulate the senses with physical movement, hearing, and touch. • Courses can be set up around a theme such as beach party, luau, Halloween, and color coordinated with the theme or season. Playing music, adding lights, and other features can make the course more visually stimulating and fun. • Signs can be made with the fun names for each element and be placed by the element. I made signs in PowerPoint and put them in sheet protectors and placed the sheet protectors over water bottles. • We hope you will share this plan with others so they can use it to create fun obstacle courses at their get- togethers, parties and events. Organizations can set up courses at their events and fundraisers. 2
  • 3. Safety • Some elements require spotters to ensure participant’s safety. • Materials need to be safe for the health of the participants. Allergies must be considered when choosing materials that come in contract with the participants. • Materials should not damage the wheelchairs or equipment used by the participants. • All participants need to be made aware of the materials used. • Adding music, lights, noises, fans, etc. may make it more fun, however, you need to consider that some children’s disabilities are triggered by strobe lights, and other features. Always ask your participants if they have any concerns before they start your course and remove any elements of concern. • Be careful not to damage any floors, make sure any tape you use will not a residue or react with the floor finish. 3
  • 4. List of Course Elements 1. Firecracker Fairway 2. Teeter Totter or The Fulcrum 3. Bubbles 4. Water Wars 5. Wheelchair Bowling 6. Beach Ball Maze 7. Rocky Road 8. Barrel Racing 9. Curtains 10. Brick Wall 11. Car Wash 12. Box Tunnel 13. Balloon blast 14. Swinging Monkeys (Pendulum) 15. Wind Machine 16. Snake Pit 17. S Curve 18. Hairpin Turn 19. Round About 20. Puddle Jumping 21. Straight Away – Full Speed Ahead 22. Backwards 23. Musical Mat 24. Limbo 25. Las Monos 26. Slalom 27. Sideways Slope 28. Speed Bumps 29. A-frame 4
  • 5. Start S-Curve Rocky Road Slalom Hairpin Turn FulcrumSpeed BumpBubblesLimbo Balloon Blast Sideways Incline Backwards Roundabout Tunnel Beach Ball MazeWheelchair BowlingWater WarsCurtainsLos Manos Straight Away Firecracker Fairway End Sample Course Layout
  • 6. Firecracker Fairway Instructions: 1. Roll out bubble wrap on to ground/floor with bubbles up. You also can tape together smaller pieces keeping back sides facing the same way and taped edges together. 2. Tape bubble wrap to floor 3. Have kids/adults drive/walk over it as fast as they can to make a firework type of noise *NOTE* - Works best if laid out on hard surfaces such as flooring, pavement or concrete. Grass does not work well. Materials: • Roll of bubble wrap. Large bubbles make louder noise. • Tape • Hard surface Safety concerns: • Some young children may be afraid of the loud noise this element makes. Therefore, this should be demonstrated with a persons foot before allowing the participants to go on it. 6
  • 7. Notes: • The platform should be a minimum of 10” wider than the widest chair/walker. • For a smaller drop, use a 2”x4” instead of a 4”x4” for the pivot. Materials: • Platform - ¾ “ Plywood, L-60”, W-40” • Pivot board - 4”x4”x40”. • Side rails - 2”x2”x60”, 2 each. • 18 wood screws, #6x2” • Glue Safety Concerns: • The board may jar a person if they go over it to quickly. • Smaller wheels may not go over the front lip of the platform easily. A metal threshold may be attached to the leading edge of the platform to alleviate this problem Teeter Totter or The Fulcrum 7 Equipment: • Tape measure • Saw • Screwdriver • Drill with #6 bit • Countersink Pivot End view Cut 1” 1 ” 1 ”Center of Platform Instructions: 1. Find the center of the platform and draw a line across it. 2. Drill 6 holes evenly spaced across the platform approximately 1” from the center. Countersink the holes on the top of the platform. This will be the center of the pivot. 3. Drill 6 holes evenly spaced along the edge of the platform approximately 1” from the edge. Countersink the holes on the bottom of the platform. 4. Glue (optional) the side rails onto each top edge of the platform and secure with wood screws from the bottom of the platform. 5. If possible, cut the corners lengthwise off the pivot 6. Place the center line of the pivot on the line of holes going across the platform with the corner cuts away from the platform, glue (optional) and secure with wood screws.
  • 8. Bubbles Instructions: 1. Have people line up facing each other a) Leave enough room for the participants to drive/walk through 2. As the participants drive/walk through blow the bubbles 3. Have the participants pop as many bubbles as they can 4. This element works best when there is little to no wind Materials: • Bubble solution and wands or electric bubble maker. Safety Concerns: • Keep bubble juice away from small children so they don’t accidentally drink it. 8
  • 9. Water Wars Instructions: 1. Have people line up facing each other a) Leave enough room for the participants to drive/walk through 2. As the participants drive/walk through, spray them with water *NOTE* - Some participants may not like getting wet, if so do not spray them. Materials: • Spray bottles • Water Safety Concerns: • Be carful not to get electronic components wet. You can cover them with a large plastic bag. 9
  • 10. Wheelchair Bowling Instructions: 1. Stack cups/cones in a pyramid and you have to toss a ball into them and knock some down before proceeding 2. Or have the participants run into them and knock them down with their chairs or walkers Materials: • Plastic cups or cones Safety Concerns: • None. 10
  • 11. Beach Ball Maze Instructions: 1. Beach ball maze, move the ball between gates with no hands or feet, use wheelchairs only. Materials: • 42” or very large beach balls • Tape or sting or benches to outline the path Safety Concerns: • The balls need to be large enough not to get stuck under any of the wheelchairs. 11
  • 12. Rocky Road Instructions: 1. Cut a flat surface on the balls and glue to the cardboard. 2. Cut pool noodles crossways to from circle of various lengths form about 1” to 2.5” thick and glue to cardboard 3. Have participants roll over the cardboard and experience the rocks! 4. Or place cut up foam on the ground. Materials: • Foam, pool noodles, and/or foam and rubber (super) balls • Cardboard Safety Concerns: • The “rocks” should be small enough not as not to get stuck under the wheelchair. • Some wheelchairs have EZ Lock docking system bolts hanging down under their chairs that may catch the “rocks.” 12
  • 13. Barrel Racing Instructions: 1. Place 3 barrels in the pattern shown. The distance between the barrels depends on the space available. 2. The barrels should be large enough to be seen from the start/finish line and from each barrel. 3. Draw tape or chalk lines to show the path to follow with arrows showing the direction of travel. Materials: • 3 Barrels, tall boxes, water cooler bottles, etc. • Chalk Safety Concerns: • None. Start & Finish 13
  • 14. Curtains Instructions: 1. Fold tablecloth in half lengthwise 2. Fold tablecloth in half widthwise until about 12” wide 3. Cut strips from bottom of tablecloth toward the top stopping about 8” from the top. This keeps tablecloth in one piece and leaves a solid portion to hang over the pole. 4. Hang tablecloth over pole or tape or pin to beam Materials: • Plastic tablecloth • Scissors • A-frame or beam • Tape or pins Safety Concerns: • Be sure the curtains do not hang down so low that they will get caught in the participant’s wheels. 14
  • 15. Brick Wall Instructions: 1. Glue boxes closed. 2. Number the boxes as shown. 3. Use a hole saw the same diameter as the rolls to cut holes in the boxes as shown. The holes are at 1/3 and 2/3 of length of the box. For a 12” box they are at 3”and 9” from the edge. Do not cut holes in the tops of the green boxes or the bottoms of the blue boxes if you want a solid looking top. 4. Cut 6 of the rolls so they are the same length as 3 boxes are high. The other two rolls should be a few inches longer than 3 boxes are high. 5. Push the boxes onto the rolls as shown to align the boxes and stabilize the structure. 6. The interior rolls are hidden inside the boxes. The outer rolls should protrude above and below the outer boxes (1,5,8,12) so they can be pushed over the poles from the canopy. 7. Use hot glue to glue the boxes together around the tubes. 8. Paint the boxes to look like bricks. 9. Slide outer tubes onto legs of a canopy frame. They will swing apart as the participants' push through them. Materials/Resources: • 16 boxes about 12” x 12” x 6” • 8 plastic or cardboard rolls at lease 3’ long • Hole saw, same diameter as the rolls • Glue sticks • Paint • Canopy Frame Safety Concerns: • None. 5 3 6 4 1 2 11 12 10 87 9
  • 16. Car Wash Instructions: 1. Combine curtains element and brick wall elements. 2. Place tarps on top of canopy frame so that the sides hang down as far as possible. 3. Put brick wall on one side of the canopy frame. 4. Hang curtains on both ends of the canopy frame. Materials/Resources: • Canopy frame and tarps • Curtains Element • Brick Wall Element Safety Concerns: • None.
  • 17. Box Tunnel Instructions: 1. Cut one side of each box down the center and open flaps. The flaps from one box will over lap the other box to join the two boxes at the center of the tunnel. 2. Cut the other sides of the two boxes like French doors as shown. Be sure not to cut all the way up the center. This gives the boxes some structure to stay together. Trim the top and bottom of the doors about ¼” to allow the doors to swing easily. 3. Do not cut the top or bottom of the boxes. The participants will roll over the bottom. The top will keep the tunnel dark. 4. Join the full open ends of the two boxes together with tape to form the center of the tunnel. 5. Participants push the first doors in to enter the tunnel and push the other doors out to exit the tunnel. Doors may need to be closed manually for the next participant. Materials: • Two same sized large appliance cardboard boxes at least 30” wide. • Duct or packing tape • Add a light stick or singing mat inside the tunnel for added effects. Safety Concerns: • None. 17 2 1
  • 18. Balloon Blast Instructions: 1. Blow up balloons 2. Decorate the pipe foam with colored duck tape 3. Tie string to end of balloon and tie a large paperclip to the other end of the ribbon 4. Drop the paperclip through the pipe foam and remove paperclip 5. Tie the ribbon to the A-frame and tape it so it will not move. 6. Tie crepe paper around A-frame if desired Materials: • A-frame (see separate instructions) • Balloons • ½” diameter pipe wrap insulation foam or pool noodles with center hole • Colored Ribbon or String • Colored Duck Tape • Crepe paper if desired Safety Concerns: • Allergies to latex, Mylar etc. need to be considered before purchasing balloons and allowing participants to do this activity • Balloons must be secured to the A-frame so participants do not become tangled in the string. Cover string with pipe insulator foam or pool noodles. • String must be short enough as to not get caught in wheels or around participant’s neck. 18
  • 19. Swinging Monkeys (Pendulum) Instructions: 1. Build A-frame 2. Tie one end of the string to the stuffed monkey 3. Tie the other end of the string to the A-frame 4. Course staff will set the swinging monkey in motion and reset when necessary Materials: • A-frame (see separate instructions) • Stuffed Monkey or other animal • String or ribbon Safety Concerns: • String should be short enough to not get caught in the wheels. • Spotter required to make sure the monkey does not get tangled around the participant or their chair. 19
  • 20. Wind Machine Instructions: 1. Place the fan on a small table or box so that it blows air at the participants faces as they drive by. 2. Use an extension cord if necessary to reach an electrical outlet. Materials: • Electric fan • Extension cord • Table or box Safety Concerns: • The fan should be stable on the table and not easily tipped over. • The extension cord must not be in the course path. 20
  • 21. Snake Pit Instructions: 1. Place rubber snakes in the course path for participants to drive over. Materials: • Rubber snakes Safety Concerns: • Some children may be afraid of the snakes, allow for a detour path so they can go around them. 21
  • 22. S-Curve Instructions: 1. Draw both sides of an S-curve path on concrete or asphalt or use rope to outline the s-curve Materials: • Rope or chalk Safety Concerns: • None. 22
  • 23. Hair Pin Turn Instructions: 1. Draw both sides of an hair pin turn on concrete or asphalt or use rope to outline the turn Materials: • Rope or chalk Safety Concerns: • None. 23
  • 24. Round About Instructions: 1. Draw a round about path on concrete or asphalt or use rope to outline the path or use a kids pool to form a circle. 2. For a more complicated path, the round about path can have one entrance and one exit, either across from each other or at 90 from each other. 3. Participants have to go around the circle or round about path until they reach the exit path. Materials: • Rope, chalk, or small kids pool • Circle outlined with colored cones Safety Concerns: • None. 24
  • 25. Puddle Jumping Instructions: 1. If you have an outdoor course, you can create a puddle of water about 1” to 3” deep depending on your participants mobility. 2. Participants drive though the puddle and make a splash! Materials: • Puddle of water Safety Concerns: • Do not have puddles if you have children using walkers. • Puddles are safe for wheelchairs, but do not make them too deep. They should not be deep enough o get the bearing in the wheels wet. 25
  • 26. Straight Away Full Speed Ahead! Instructions: 1. Chalk two parallel lines on the ground or for the straight away element. Or you can use rope or cones to outline the path. 2. Have participants go as fast as they can through the straight away element. Materials: • Chalk, rope, cones, or cups Safety Concerns: • Keep the track clear or people and things during the course. 26
  • 27. Backwards Instructions: 1. Create two lines in any configuration on the ground for the backwards element to outline the path. Be sure lines are wide enough apart to ensure that participants have enough room to maneuver. 2. Have participants go as fat as they can through the path. Materials: • Chalk, rope, cups, or cones Safety Concerns: • Keep the track clear or people and things during the course. 27
  • 28. Musical Mat Instructions: 1. Place mat on floor and have participants roll or walk over it. 2. Put in the box tunnel for a fun or scary surprise. Materials: • Singing or screaming doormat Safety Concerns: • None. 28
  • 29. Limbo Instructions: 1. Tape pom-poms to ends of broom handle to make it more interesting, if desired. 2. Have one or two people hold the ends of the pole just at the participant’s head level so the participants has to drive under it. 3. The holders can raise the pole to let them by if needed. Materials: • Broom handle, pole or stick about 4’ long • Pom-Poms Safety Concerns: • Make sure participants do not run into the pole or get hit by it when crossing under it. 29
  • 30. Las Monos Instructions: 1. Fill gloves with enough water to fill fingers, blow up with air, and tie in a knot 2. Decorate the pipe foam with colored duck tape 3. Tie string to end of glove and tie a large paperclip to the other end of the ribbon 4. Drop the paperclip through the pipe foam and remove paperclip 5. Tie the ribbon to the A-frame and tape it so it will not move. Materials: • A-frame (see separate instructions) • ½” diameter pipe wrap insulation foam or pool noodles with center hole • Colored Ribbon or String • Colored Duck Tape • Latex free medical gloves • Water 30 Safety Concerns: • Allergies to latex need to be considered before purchasing gloves and allowing participants to do this activity • Gloves must be secured to the A-frame so participants do not become tangled in the string. Cover string with pipe insulator foam or pool noodles. • String must be short enough as to not get caught in wheels or around participant’s neck.
  • 31. Slalom Instructions: 1. Set up cones in a straight line about 3’-5’ apart and have participants weave in and out around the cones down the path. Materials: • Colored cones or large plastic cups Safety Concerns: • Cones might get stuck under the chairs – need spotter 31
  • 32. Sideways Slope Instructions: 1. One side of chair is driven up the incline and the other is on the flat ground. Safety Concerns: • If incline is too steep, chair could tip over. • Keep only two wheels from the same side of the chair on the ramp. 32 Materials: • Platform - ¾ “ Plywood, L-40”, W-24” • Base - 4” x 4” x 42” • Ramps - ¾ “ Plywood, Right Triangles, Height-60”, Base-40”, 2 each • Ramp Brace - ¾ “ Plywood, 3” x 20”. 2 Each. • Side rails - Platform rail - 2”x2”x40”, 1 each. - Ramp rails - 2”x2”x10”, 2 each. • 6 wood screws, #6 x 3 ½ ” • 12 wood screws, #6 x 1 ¼ ” • 4 Heavy duty hinge, 2 ½ “ to 3” with screws • Glue Equipment: • Tape measure • Saw • Screwdriver • Drill with #6 bit • Countersink
  • 33. Sideways Incline Continued 40”10” 10” 24” Top View 42” 1”, 200 Bevel Base, End View Instructions: 1. Cut an approximate 20o bevel off both ends of the top of the base 1” from the end. 2. If possible, cut an approximate 20o bevel lengthwise off the base. 3. Drill 6 #6 holes evenly spaced through the platform rail. Countersink. 4. Place the rail on one edge of the platform and drill 6 holes through the platform that align with the 6 holes in the platform rail. 5. Glue and screw the rail, platform, and base together using the #6 x 3 ½ ” screws, lining up the three edges. The 1” bevel on the base should extend past the platform on each end. 6. Drill 2 holes in the 10” side of each triangle ramp 1” from the edge. Countersink. 7. Glue and screw the ramp rails to the ramp using #6 x 1 ¼ ” screws. 8. Bevel one of the long edges of each ramp brace approximate 20o. 9. Drill 4 holes evenly spaced in each ramp brace. Countersink. 10. Glue and screw the ramp braces to each end of the platform. Position the brace so the end is butted up against the base and the beveled edge extends past the end of the platform approximately 1”. 11. Attach a ramp to the each end of the platform using the hinges. Screw one hinge to the end of the base and the bottom of the ramp, and screw the other hinge to the bottom of the ramp brace and the bottom of the ramp about two-thirds the way down from the base. Platform, Side View Ramp BraceSide Platform Rail Base
  • 34. Speed Bumps Instructions: 1. Cut pool noodles in half lengthwise 2. If desired, paint cardboard and allow to dry 3. Glue pool noodles to cardboard with space between them (one to two pool noodles width apart using hot glue gun. 4. Tape cardboard to floor. Use floor or painters tape if taping to basketball court or wood flooring to avoid damaging the floor. Duck tape works well for concrete. Materials: • Cardboard • Pool noodles • Hot glue gun • Glue sticks • Tape Safety Concerns: • None 34
  • 35. A-frame Instructions: 1. The A-frame needs to be taller than the tallest person using the course. 2. For example if you have a 30 angle for the A-frame legs and you need the height to be 5 feet, then the legs need to be 5.2 feet or 5’ 2.4”. For a 6’ height with a 30 angle the legs need to be 6.2’ or 6 ‘ 2.4 “.A= 75 5’ a b c C= 90 B= 15 Using the sine function in a right triangle: Sin of an angle is the opposite over the hypotenuse sin 75 = a/c c = 5’/sin 75 c = 5.2’ D= 30 35