The Ultimate Guide to Customizing Your Wheelchair Foot Plate

The Ultimate Guide to Customizing Your Wheelchair Foot Plate

The whole footrest of a wheelchair provides ample support for the user’s legs and feet. But most of the time, the footrest comes in traditional designs, especially its footplates. You may find it boring or too plain and simple. The best way to add more character, comfort, and functionality to these plates is to customize them. But how?

This article explains the possible ways to customize the plate. Most importantly, it explains how and which aspects of the plate you can customize. Thus, you can customize your wheelchair foot plate and tailor your ride however you like.

2 Ways to Get a Customized Wheelchair Foot Plate

There are two general ways you can customize the footplates of your wheelchair. These include:

1. Buy a Custom Wheelchair

A custom wheelchair is built to accommodate a user with special or specific needs. It's also designed for those with long-term disabilities or chronic conditions. This type of chair is best for customizing the chair and its footplates.

This also works well for those who are buying a wheelchair for the first time. You can get one from your preferred manufacturer and explain your preferences and needs.

2. Get a Wheelchair With Removable Footplates

Another option is to get a wheelchair with removable footplates or footrests. This way, you can replace them with your customized plates. But aside from that, you can replace it in two ways:

  • Buy a different, existing foot plate in your preferred style or type
  • Have a foot plate customized by a customizing manufacturer

Remember that, among the two, having a plate specifically customized by a manufacturer offers more options. You can only choose from what’s available when you buy a different existing plate. But it’s still viable if you want to change the footplate that came with your wheelchair.

How to Customize Your Foot Plates?

Specifically, here are the steps you typically need to take to fully customize the footplates of a wheelchair:

Choose a Foot Plate Type

There are different types of foot plates you can choose to use with your wheelchair:

  • Rigid Tube: This is a fixed type of plate and isn’t ideal for folding or portable wheelchairs. Basically, it’s a rigid tube shaped like a footplate, so it doesn’t offer much customization.

  • Flip-to-Side: This type is mounted on one side of the wheelchair frame. It can be lifted up and down as a single piece, so you can easily get in and out of the wheelchair without the plates getting in the way.

  • Swing Away:

    This is the type commonly used in standard wheelchairs. It’s a good option for people who want to switch between toe-propelling and self-propelling quickly and easily.

Take Note of the Sizing

The footplates should be able to support your feet, especially in terms of width. In general, they should offer support from the back of the user's heel to around the ball of the foot. Measure and take note of the size of your feet, as it will be essential in determining the right size of footplates to get.

One of the most popular sizes is the 6” wide-foot plates for big power wheelchairs. However, you have to consider adding some width allowance for the attachment drill holes so you can attach them to the footrests.

Pick a Material

Two of the most common materials used for standard footplates are aluminum and plastic composite. In terms of durability, aluminum is the better choice, and you can use it for a long time. Plus, aluminum plates are easier to customize. You can add holes or other shapes to the plates through cutouts.

However, a plastic composite would be better in terms of comfort since it’s not as hard-to-touch as metal. Also, another deciding factor would be your budget, as aluminum tends to be more expensive.

Choose Your Design

The last step is to pick your preferred design. This can be in terms of color, style, or even other design elements like hole cutouts. In most cases, readily available footplates on the market are only available in black, gray, or metallic colors. But with a customized plate, you can customize even the color of the plates.


The wheelchair foot plate is more than an accessory part of the chair. It’s a supportive component that allows your feet and legs to rest comfortably in a wheelchair. Depending on your preferred style and needs, it can even enhance the appearance of the chair. If you need other accessories to customize your experience, you can visit our wheelchair collection!

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