Play between Wheelchairs and Non-Wheelchairs
I sat in on multiple sessions of kickball and other playground games, I saw kids in wheelchairs have a tough time playing games with other children because of:
Kids in wheelchairs would have to be handed the ball by someone else to play
The game would have to slow down or relax the rules to accommodate the wheelchair players
The games weren't designed with wheelchairs in mind from the start, so the kids had difficulty adapting
Wheelchair Specific Games
The main wheelchair-based game the kids would play is Wheelchair Soccer. With 4 wheelchairs in the facility, we would play games of 2 v. 2 soccer, as well as run normal practice drills of ball control and passing.
They weren't built for this sort of movement, therefore it was difficult to control the ball
All you needed was the joystick to move the wheelchair, therefore soccer was incredibly simple to play
The level of play between children in wheelchairs and those not in wheelchairs is at a disconnect. When kids in wheelchairs tried to interact with kids running around, the games were stagnant and not as immersive or fun. With a game designed exclusively for wheelchairs, we could give the kids a chance to have immersive, competitive play.
The kids at courage league had both physical and mental disabilities. The children in electric wheelchairs mostly had physical disabilities and used electric wheelchairs to move quickly and play with other kids while on the ground. They would need assistance moving in and out of their day-to-day wheelchairs with the help of caregivers.
This is possible with electric wheelchairs
Courage leage has 4 wheelchairs. They only require one hand to fully operate.
Each machine is identical, nobody has an advantage over anyone else. A game that only uses the electric wheelchairs would be fair for anybody, regardless of ability level.
In collaboration with Courage League, we came up with a game that had action, rewarded wheelchair dexterity, and brought a new experience to kids who have limited mobility: wheelchair lasertag
Using light, sound, and vibrations, the guns clearly indicate to the players what mode they are in. Having multiple modes of feedback wherever possible was a priority, to reduce confusion.