Inspection of supporting and suspending systems

Armrests, footrests, arm and foot supports are typical features of a wide variety of products such as seating furniture, vehicles and various technical aids for rehabilitation. They serve to ensure a posture-stable positioning and are decisive elements in maintaining a healthy posture, pressure distribution and support the user`s transfer in and out of a device. Furthermore, the user is protected from the effects of impact, shock and pinching loads. Adjustment options often include depth, width, height and angle adjustments.

Single-piece and separated footrests are offered, which support the feet independently. Straps or stops on the heels and lower legs are common means for securing the positioning of the feet. The designs range from swivelling and folding to removable footrests. The designs of armrests are diverse and often fulfill additional functions besides postural support, such as increasing stability or attaching additional equipment like trays, shelves or holders. Armrests can be removable, fixed or foldable with padded or rigid surfaces and are often height adjustable.

Various product or test standards contain methods for testing strength in discrete application scenarios. Due to the variety of products, product standards cannot incorporate every individual product feature. Extended tests adapted to the planned application enable targeted statements on the following aspects:

  • strength, dimensional stability and deformation resistance
  • strength, dimensional stability and deformation resistance of fasteners, locking devices and mounting accessories
  • durability of folding and adjustment mechanisms
  • durability of padding composites (abrasion)
  • operating forces for removing and folding the rest / support
  • strength and stability under dynamic load distribution, i.e. a redistribution of weight from one rest / support to the other
  • ergonomic aspects: Transfer, pressure distribution characteristics, accessibility of adjustment mechanisms, risk of clamping & squeezing

Our test methods cover specified load scenarios, ergonomic aspects, folding mechanisms, adjustment mechanisms, forms of rough treatment and foreseeable abuse. This enables definite statements to be made about the properties of the footrest in its intended use.