clinical information

The Gross Motor Function Classification System or GMFCS is a 5 level clinical classification system that describes the gross motor function of people with cerebral palsy on the basis of self-initiated movement abilities.

able play assessment

The AblePlay Product Evaluation is a review process which provides unparalleled information about a product and its ability to help children with skill development. It is conducted by AblePlay evaluators who have backgrounds in special education, early childhood education, or related therapeutic disciplines and have been previously certified by the National Lekotek Center. A major part of the evaluation process involves using the toys or play products with children of all abilities that participate in the Lekotek family play sessions

.• Quantifiable results gathered from assessment

• Tabulation of data and translation into star rating

Upon completion of the evaluation process the data is tallied and a rating is assigned in each of five categories: cognitive, communicative, physical, sensory and social/emotional. 

Physical Skills  

FATWHEELS promotes the development of motor planning skills, as riders mount the bike and navigate throughout their environment.  FATWHEELS encourages the development of bilateral coordination, as riders learn to simultaneously move both legs to turn the bike pedals (pre-walking skills). FATWHEELS helps develop core strength/trunk control, as riders stand up to pedal and make their way up a steep hill or difficult terrain.

Play Ideas

To develop auditory processing skills/reaction time when engaged in playing the classic game of “Red Light, Green Light”. The facilitator will ask riders to all line up at a starting point; riders will have to try to make their way to the designated finish line as facilitator calls out “red light” (stop) and “green light” (go). To promote hand-eye coordination, the facilitator will set up a basket in the middle of the driveway. Rider will receive one water balloon and attempt to toss into the basket as he or she rides past it.  To assist in core strength development, create an obstacle course making the FATWHEELS a portion of the competition. To increase core strength engagement have rider drive bike up a hill, through the grass/alternating terrain, and/or around large obstacles.   

Adaptation Ideas

For a rider that has grown comfortable in using FATWHEELS, the facilitator may raise the FATWHEELS slightly, so they do not make full contact with the ground surface. This will provide the rider with the sensation of what it feels like to balance on a bike, while maintaining confidence knowing that their FATWHEELS are there to support them. Swap out the standard bike seat with a wider one that may provide more support to the rider.

Sensory Skills

FATWHEELS fosters the development of visual processing and self-regulation, as the rider has to practice awareness of their environment (utilizing all sensations) and when and where they need to stop riding (e.g. at the end of the driveway, if there are others in their path, etc). FATWHEELS promotes understanding of directionality, as the rider operates the handlebars to the left, right, center, forward, or backward.

Play Ideas

To promote understanding of directionality, the facilitator will create an obstacle course using chalk to draw arrows around cones displaying in which direction the rider must go. To enhance sensory play, set up a sprinkler in the yard and have the rider bike in and out of the water, For an extra challenge, use an oscillating sprinkler and have the rider try to ride down and back, trying to avoid getting wet. To enhance sensory play and creativity, the facilitator will sprinkle washable chalk paint onto the driveway. Riders will then drive over the paint covering their tires with it, thus creating their masterpiece as the pavement becomes their canvas!  At the end of play, riders can rinse off their bike by spraying with water or creating a little, “car wash”.

Social/Emotional Skills

FATWHEELS aids participants in boosting confidence through repetition, practice, and increased independence while riding! FATWHEELS fosters social interaction between family and friends, as riders have the opportunity to join others for a bike ride.  FATWHEELS promotes confidence and self-esteem, as riders gain a sense of independence and freedom to ride.  FATWHEELS develops patience as children learn the mechanics and balance of riding a bike.

Play Ideas

To develop self-confidence, facilitator will outline a race course and time the child each time they complete it. Rider will be encouraged to record their times, as a visual reminder to motivate rider to beat their previous best time. To strengthen social interaction skills, each rider will take turns leading the group on their bike adventure, describing what they see, smell, hear, and any “obstacle” that they may encounter (e.g. describing an African bike safari) encouraging riders to use their imagination. To promote the development of creative and imaginative play, the facilitator can encourage riders to pretend that their bikes are motorcycles and make the appropriate sounds. To enhance practice of directionality, memory, and visual processing skills (e.g. reviewing visual map, reading street signs, using visual land marks, following directions, practicing sidewalk/community safety rules) riders may be encouraged to help navigate to and/or from a nearby goal location (e.g. library, park, ice cream shop) with assistance/supervision from responsible facilitator.

Developmental Processes Promoted:

Hand & Finger Grasp

Visual Attention

Visual Processing



Parent Feedback

“I would place her on the bike the first few times, and now she seeks out the bike and climbs up on her own. I love it because it improved her balance and coordination, she can ride with confidence and joy now, without the frustration!”- Melania Mother of a 9-year-old with Autism

professionals LOVE FATWHEELS!

Fantastic Product Mark L. (MPT) - Salt Lake City, UT

FATWHEELS are a fantastic product. I have been using them for about 5 years and they have really been great for my patients that have trunk control but still struggle with their balance while riding a bike. In the past, I would have recommended a trike for this patient population, but now with FATWHEELS I can give my patients the stability that they need while they are using the most typical type of bike.""

A Great Option For Patients K. Newman (PT) - Nashville TN

"FATWHEELS are a great option for children who aren't able to balance on a standard bike, but don't need the level of support of an adaptive bicycle. It gives them a great recreational activity to participate in alongside their peers, which also has cardiovascular & strengthening benefits.

THE BEST!!!!! Valerie Miller MS PT

You have officially made my Christmas card list for whenever I decide to start sending them. Your's will be the first one mailed.

Thank you for everything. The children will be thrilled to ride their new bikes with the fat wheels!

Great product/great service Pam Buffalo PT MN

"I ordered the large set of fatwheels for an upcoming bike trip with my students. They arrived in a few days. I realized that I ordered the wrong size, called and explained what happened. The person who answered the phone, found the size that I needed and drove them herself to the UPS store so that they would arrive in time for our trip. I couldn't be more pleased with the customer service I received. And the product is easy to assemble, durable, and allowed for students to be independent on their bike. Five stars for this company, the product and their staff!"

Small FatWheels Bryan Jacques Walking & Wheeling Appleton, WI

"These are amazing for children!"

Great Product Dalhousie, NB Canada

"My company sells medical equipment and we receive requests from our partners to supply this product for children with mobility issues. These children gain the freedom to use their bikes with their friends with FATWHEELS installed. Great product and a great company to deal with. Thank-you" - Jean-Claude

Products Have Held Strong Pat Fiero (LPTA) Odessa, TX

"We are a non profit organization that specializes in pediatric PT, OT, Speech and Audiology. We started back in in 1953 and are still serving our community today. So having items that can hold strong through the years is important for us, and your products have held strong. As a matter of fact, the first pair we got 13 years ago, are used on a daily basis for therapy sessions and we couldn't be happier with the way they perform. Thank you for making a great product! Looking forward to continuing to use and getting more products from FATWHEELS."