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For bedridden patients, trying to remain comfortable while lying in bed for prolonged periods, it can be a real struggle. Whether the patient is infirm, recovering from surgery, or they are suffering with a mobility impairment, being confined to a bed can not only be a frustrating experience, but it can also be detrimental to their wellbeing.
The solution to this problem is a Geri chair. These reclining chairs are fitted with wheels, allowing the caregiver to wheel the patient out of the confines of their bedroom. They provide a comfortable and supportive seat where the individual can sit for extended periods, while they recover.
In this article, we will cover some of the best Geri chairs that are available, that not only can keep your loved one comfortable, but it can also allow them to take a nap, read a book, or just relax in the comfort of a specially adapted made chair.
Geri Chairs Comparison Chart
Drive Medical D574 3-Position Geri Chair
Drive Medical D577 4-Position Geri Chair
Lumex 566DG Geri Recliner
Winco 6940 Swingaway Arm Geri Recliner
Winco 6950 XL Bariatric Geri Recliner
47" (H) x 25" (W) x 41" (D)
47.5" (H) x 30.5" (W) x 38" (D)
51.5" (H) x 33" (W) x 38" (D)
48.5" (H) x 33.5" (W) x 41" (D)
48.5" (H) x 37.5" (W) x 41" (D)
19" (W) x 19" (D)
21.5" (W) x 20" (D)
20.5" (W) x 19" (D)
21" (W) x 20" (D)
25" (W) x 20" (D)
Number of Positions
Chair Total Weight
What is a Geri Chair?
A Geri chair, also known as a geriatric chair, is a padded high-back recliner that is fitted with wheeled castors. It is designed to offer greater comfort and support over a traditional wheelchair.
These mobile recliners are suited for patients with mobility impairments, as well as for post-operative individuals and the infirm, who need to sit down for prolonged periods to convalesce and relax. A Geri chair can make patient transfers easier and safer, as the caregiver can conveniently wheel the patient between rooms while they remain seated in the chair.
Due to the fact, the backrest is reclinable, and the leg rest can be elevated on the chair, the patient can adopt a range of positions, allowing them to remain comfortable, as well as well supported for extended periods while seated.
Benefits of a Geri Chair
A Geri chair can offer a range of benefits which include:
- Increased comfort – For immobile patients, trying to remain comfortable while seated or lying down for extended periods, can be an all too common problem. A Geri chair can help remedy this issue. Geri Chairs are padded, and feature an adjustable headrest that can provide effective neck support. The leg rest on the chair allows the patient to elevate their legs, which can help to improve circulation. It can prove beneficial for arthritis sufferers as well. As the chair can be reclined, the angle of the backrest can be adjusted to provide maximum comfort and support. This can prove particularly helpful for those recovering from an injury or surgery. Some Geri chairs also feature a lap tray that allows the patient to eat, read, or perform craftwork, all from the comfort of their chair, without needing to get up.
- Easier and safer transfers – Trying to help move or lift a patient with restrictive mobility or who is frail, can prove particularly challenging. Not only can it put unnecessary strain on the caregiver’s back, but it can also prove unsafe if the patient is not handled correctly. This could result in injuries or falls. Due to the fact a Geri chair is fitted with wheeled castors, the patient can be wheeled around the home by the caregiver, while remaining seated, thus helping to make transfers easier and safer. Geri chairs are normally fitted with several safety features, including lockable wheels that can be applied once the chair is in position, as well as a safety belt that can help to stop the patient from sliding or failing out of the chair.
- Pressure relief – For the bedridden and the infirm, sitting in one position for extended periods can increase the risk of bedsores. Geri chairs are normally constructed from pressure-relieving materials that can assist in distributing the individual’s weight across the chair’s surface, which can help to relieve pressure as well as improve circulation. As Geri chairs are reclinable, the patient can reposition themselves regularly, which can help to prevent bedsores as well.
- Easier to keep clean – Geri chairs are usually constructed from vinyl upholstery that can easily be wiped down with a wet cloth. The upholstery is often treated with an antibacterial protection layer as well, that can inhibit the growth of mold and bacteria. This can help to prevent the risk of infections. As vinyl is impermeable, spillages can be wiped up easily, which is a particularly useful feature for incontinence sufferers.
Different Types of Geri Chairs
While there are a range of Geri chairs available, the main factor that differentiates them from one another is the number of positions the chair can adopt when it is reclined. The main types of Geri chairs include:
3-Position Geri Chair
A 3-position reclining Geri chair can be adjusted in three different positions. This includes upright, which is an ideal position for sitting-up for reading or carrying out craftwork. The next position is elevated leg, this where the leg rest is raised. This can help with circulation and reduce lower swelling, and is a suitable position to watch TV, or to unwind. The final position is fully reclined. This is where the backrest and leg rest are both retracted, and this position is suitable for sleeping.
4-Position Geri Chair
A 4-position Geri chair has 3 positions (upright, elevated leg, fully reclined) just like a 3-position chair; it can also adopt a fourth position called the Trendelenburg position. This is where the user is laid flat with their feet elevated above the head.
The Trendelenburg position can assist in relieving pressure, and it can promote a better posture as well as boost circulation. It is particularly suited for individuals suffering from disorders such as hypotension, neuropathy, edema, as well as joint/muscle pain.
Infinite Position/Tilt-In Space Geri Chair
An infinite position also known as a tilt-in space Geri chair provides the most flexibility in terms of positioning. It is ideal for patients looking for the ultimate comfort and relaxation experience.
With an infinite positioning Geri chair, it has an unlimited number of reclining angles. It can be positioned to the exact needs of the patient to ensure maximum comfort and pressure relief. The leg rests also work independently from the chair, so it can be raised or lowered irrespective of whether the chair has been reclined or not. So, whether you want to sit upright while reading a book, or you want to lie completely flat to help with your bad back, or you want to adopt the Trendelenburg position, these positions are all possible with this type of chair.
How to Choose the Right Geri Chair?
Geri chairs can prove particularly beneficial for users with mobility impairments, the infirm, as well as post-operative patients. There are, however, several factors you may want to consider first to ensure that you choose one that will offer the patient the most comfort and support. These factors include:
An important decision that you will need to make is whether you would prefer a 3-position, a 4-position, or an infinite position Geri chair. This decision will largely depend on the level of comfort and adjustability you are after.
A 3-position Geri chair is perfect if you’re looking for a chair that you can read from, watch the TV, or take a quick nap. 4-position recliners are ideal if you suffer from hypotension, leg or ankle swelling, or you suffer from joint pain. It will allow you to adopt the Trendelenburg position, which can help to maintain good circulation, and relieve pressure on your joints.
If you are planning on sitting in the chair for a lot of the day, an infinite position chair will offer a greater number of seated and reclinable positions. It will allow you to regularly change positions so that you can remain as comfortable as possible throughout the day. So, whether you are reading a book, watching the TV, sewing, or just taking a nap, the chair can be adjusted to your specific needs.
Powered or Manual?
Geri chairs are available in manual or powered models. Manually adjusted chairs require the patient to have some dexterity to operate the reclining mechanism, which is usually located on the side of the chair, or it can be activated by lifting the armrests. For patients unable to operate the manual mechanism, they may have to rely on a caregiver to help with this task.
Electrically powered chairs are easier to operate. They are particularly suited for users with limited finger dexterity, although they are usually more expensive than manual models. If you are considering an electrically powered Geri chair, ensure that it has a rechargeable back-up battery pack, so that the chair can be operated in the event of a power outage.
Always check the advertised weight capacity of the Geri chair to ensure it can withstand the patient’s weight. Most standard Geri chairs can support weights up to 250 lbs. Bariatric Geri chairs are available that have larger weight-bearing capacities (up to 500 lbs), and they also normally feature wider seats.
If the user is particularly unsteady on their feet, or they have limited weight-bearing ability, you may want to consider opting for a Geri chair that comes equipped with drop-down arms.
Drop-down arms on a chair can assist with sideway transfers, making them easier and safer for the patient. The caregiver can wheel the Geri chair over to where the patient is located, such as by their wheelchair or bed, and the arms on the chair can then be detached or dropped. The patient can then step into the chair easily without them needing to rotate their body.
For greater convenience, consider a Geri chair that has a fold-down table that is either fitted to the side, or the front of the chair. The table will provide a handy place to eat from, read, or even carry out leisure activities. It will allow the patient to have essentials close to hand without needing to get up.
Geri chairs are designed to transport patients between rooms, so you must check that the chair can safely fit through any relevant doorways. Identify the narrowest doorway and passageway where the chair will need to pass through, and check the chair’s width, to ensure it can comfortably fit through.
Best Geri Chairs
1. Drive Medical D574 3-Position Recliner Geri Chair
The Drive Medical D574 Geri recliner is perfect if you’re looking for a supportive and comfortable Geri chair. The recliner features 3 positions, including upright, elevated footrest, and deep recline, so whether you’re reading, watching TV, or you’re taking a quick nap you will be able to adjust the position of the recliner to maximize comfort. The headrest provides adequate neck support, and the wide padded armrests offer increased comfort.
To recline the chair, you simply need to place your hands on the armrest and push back against the backrest, and the chair will automatically adjust to the alternating reclinable positions. If the patient has limited dexterity, the chair can be reclined by the caregiver. To maximize safety, the chair features a lock bar, which helps maintain the chairs recline position.
The chair is equipped with a table tray that can be used by the patient to eat meals from, read, or carry out craftwork. When the tray is not in use, it can be conveniently stowed by the side of the recliner so it does not impede transfers.
The 5-inch caster wheels provide good maneuverability over most surfaces allowing the caregiver to effortlessly transport the chair between rooms without needing to struggle. Once the chair is in position, the rear wheels can be locked to prevent the chair from moving.
To assist with cleaning, the side panels on the recliner can be removed and due to the vinyl upholstery, it can be easily be wiped clean quickly with a wet cloth. The Geri chair comes in a choice of 3 colors including rosewood, blue ridge, and jade.
- Chair dimensions: 47″ (H) X 25″ (W) x 41″ (D)
- Chair dimensions: 47″ (H) X 25″ (W) x 41″ (D)
- Weight capacity: 250 lbs
- Number of positions: 3 positions
- Chair weight: 110 lbs
2. Drive Medical D577 4-Position Recliner Geri Chair
With a choice of 4 seated positions, the Drive Medical D577 Geri recliner is a versatile and extremely comfortable chair. An ideal option for anyone recovering from recent surgery or is infirm, who is looking for a chair that they can unwind in during the day while they recuperate.
The chair can be placed in any one of the following positions, including upright, partially reclined, fully reclined, and Trendelenburg. The Trendelenburg position is where the patient’s feet are elevated above their head. This position can help with a range of disorders, including edema, diabetes, as well as circulation issues.
The release handle on the Geri chair has been positioned on both sides of the chair, so it can be reclined from either side. The chair is fitted with a gas cylinder that controls the full recline, and the Trendelenburg position on the chair. These two positions can only be operated by the caregiver, while the upright and partial recline position can be operated by the patient as well.
There are two large side tables fitted to each armrest, which provides the occupant with plenty of storage space to keep essential items close to hand. The chair is easy to maintain, the side panels can be detached for easier cleaning.
The Drive Medical Geri chair is constructed from a sturdy and durable steel frame, and it has a weight capacity of up to 250 lbs. The 5-inch caster wheels provide good maneuverability even over carpeted surfaces.
- Chair dimensions: 47.5″ (H) x 30.5″ (W) x 38″ (D)
- Seat dimensions: 21.5″ (W) x 20″ (D)
- Weight capacity: 250 lbs
- Number of positions: 4 positions
- Chair weight: 115 lbs
3. Lumex 566DG Infinite Position Geri Recliner
The Lumex 566DG is a good choice if you’re looking for a Geri chair that provides great adjustability. The chair features a comfortable contoured seat, and the wide backrest provides good lumbar support.
The Lumex Geri recliner can be placed in a range of positions, from upright, to fully reclined, as well as Trendelenburg, making it suitable for patients who need to sit for extended periods. The chair uses LiquiCell technology, which is a liquid-filled thin membrane that is designed to reduce shearing and friction forces on the user’s skin, which helps to prevent pressure sores.
To position the chair into the Trendelenburg position, the caregiver can use the foot pedal that is located on either side of the chair. This can be done easily without needing to bend down. The Geri chair features drop-arms that can be lowered during transfers to make them easier, and safer for both the patient and caregiver. To ensure the patient has everything close to hand, the Lumex recliner is fitted with two foldable side tables.
Due to the higher seat height, it reduces the strain on the user’s lower muscles and joints, making it easier for the patient to lower themselves onto the chair as well as off afterward.
The chair is easy to maintain, not only do the side-panels pop off to assist with cleaning, but the upholstery is also treated with a microbe shield, which helps to inhibit the growth of bacteria and reduces the risk of infections.
- Chair dimensions: 51.5″ (H) x 33″ (W) x 38″ (D)
- Seat dimensions: 20.5″ (W) x 19″ (D)
- Weight capacity: 350 lbs
- Number of positions: Infinite
- Chair weight: 135 lbs
4. Winco 6940 Swingaway Arm Geri Recliner
For patients recovering from surgery or for the infirm, chair transfers can be fraught with danger, especially if the individual suffers from impaired lower mobility. A recliner with swing arms can make chair transfers easier and safer for the patient, as well as helping to reduce the workload for the caregiver.
The Winco 6940 Geri recliner is particularly suited for such individuals. This recliner features dual swing arms that can be activated using the quick release mechanism located by the front casters. Whether the patient is a wheelchair user, or they are bed-bound, the user can be assisted into the Geri chair more easily without them having to struggle once the swing-away arms have been opened.
The Geri chair offers a choice of 4 different positions. This ensures that the patient remains as comfortable as possible throughout the day, and it allows the individual to alternate between positions to reduce the risk of pressure sores. A Trendelenberg release handle is located on either side of the chair, allowing it to be easily activated by the caregiver. The seat also features LiquiCell technology, which is designed to improve circulation, as well as prevent skin breakdown.
Two foldable side trays provide sufficient storage space for the patient, allowing them to carry out a range of activities all from the comfort of their chair.
- Chair dimensions: 48.5″ (H) x 33.5″ (W) x 41″ (D)
- Seat dimensions: 21″ (W) x 20″ (D)
- Weight capacity: 350 lbs
- Number of positions: 4 positions
- Chair weight: 104 lbs
5. Winco 6950 XL Bariatric Geri Recliner
With its 450 lbs weight capacity, the Winco 6950 XL Geri recliner is particularly suited to bariatric individuals. The extra-wide seat (25″ (W) x 20″ (D)) provides an increased seating area for larger framed individuals allowing them to unwind in total comfort.
The 4-position recliner’s built-in headrest and the wide elastic bands on the backrest provides good support to both the neck and lumbar area. The chair reclines into the Trendelenburg position, which helps to distribute the patient’s weight, and assists in reducing pressure on the user’s joints and muscles. It can also help with circulation disorders, hypotension, and swelling.
Heavier individuals are often more prone to pressure sores when seated for extended periods. The Winco 6950 XL chair is fitted, however, with LiquiCell technology which is designed to improve circulation and reduce the risk of pressure sores.
Trying to transfer larger individuals with mobility impairments into a chair can often prove particularly challenging for caregivers. To make transfers easier and safer, the chair is fitted with swing-arm armrests, that provide a wide opening and assists with lateral transfers, and it also helps with cleaning.
To ensure the patient’s safety, the casters are lockable, which helps secure the Geri chair once in position. The Geri recliner is well built and sturdy. To provide peace of mind, the chair comes with a 3-year upholstery and moving parts warranty, and there is a lifetime warranty on the frame.
- Chair dimensions: 48.5″ (H) x 37.5″ (W) x 41″ (D)
- Seat dimensions: 25″ (W) x 20″ (D)
- Weight capacity: 450 lbs
- Number of positions: 4 positions
- Chair weight: 127 lbs