Awards for Paralympic Wheelchair

Our Design for the BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair wins awards in all established international design competitions in 2017.

On behalf of BMW of North America, the Official Mobility Partner of the United States Olympic Committee, Designworks had participated in the development of a new racing wheelchair for use by athletes of the U.S. Paralympics Track and Field Team in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. For this project, our team collaborated with the U.S. Paralympics Track and Field team in identifying and addressing the needs for potential improvements in the team´s equipment.

Asked early in 2016 by Wired Magazine whether we would be able to quantify the chair’s performance benefits, we asked them to wait for the Rio Paralympic Games. Later in the year in Rio, the US squad gave the answer to the question itself: Athletes using the wheelchair designed by our team won three gold medals, three silvers, and a bronze while setting two Paralympic records. In 2017, four design awards were added to the wheelchair´s trophy list.

to personalize the cockpit, custom molds of the athletes’ bodies were created from 3-D scans

instead of aluminium, carbon fiber was used for the frame providing greater stiffness and efficiency

Award Wins 2017 for BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair

Red Dot 2017:  After its successful debut at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games where it helped athletes win seven medals, the BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair was recognized with the Red Dot Award for outstanding product design in early 2017.

iF Award 2017:  In the beginning of the year, the prestigious iF jury also announced its results, selecting the BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair among the winners. Recognized as a symbol of design excellence around the world, the iF Award welcomes over 5,000 submissions from 70 countries every year.

IDEA 2017:  In the summer of 2017, the Paralympic Racing Wheelchair received yet another recognition of its design quality winning the IDEA Award issued by IDSA. IDSA is the nonprofit Industrial Designers Society of America and one of America´s oldest and largest membership associations for industrial design professionals.

Good Design 2017:  In December, the Good Design Award jury honored eight projects from Designworks for a variety of industries affirming their outstanding design quality. Amongst the winners again: The BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair. The Good Design Award is one of the world’s most prestigious, recognized, and oldest design award programs. It was established in 1950 to honor outstanding achievements in design.

German Design Award 2018: This recognition is awarded annualy to projects that truly represent pioneering contributions to the German and international design landscape. The Award jury honoured the BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair naming it an ideal tool to support athletes in achieving world-class performance.

“Athletes need to keep their lower bodies as firmly anchored to the chair as possible so they don’t waste any effort due to poor ergonomic positioning or shifting of their body during a race,” says Brad Cracchiola, project lead at Designworks, L.A. Studio. “With the BMW Paralympic Racing Wheelchair we set out to transfer the athlete’s power more efficiently into speed and we’re proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish with the athletes and their coaches”, he adds.