Welcome to

Beneficial Designs

We are located in Minden, Nevada just east of the Sierras. We believe all individuals should have access to the physical, intellectual, and spiritual aspects of life. Please earn more about us!


We have many different services available to meet your needs. Beneficial Designs provides highly efficient assessment and transition plan services to identify hazards and access issues in the sidewalk and outdoor recreation environments.

Wheelchair Testing

We can insure that your manual and powered wheelchair products will be tested to meet the requirements necessary for Pricing, Data Analysis and Coding (PDAC), 510k submission to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and/or United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) submission.

Sidewalk Assessment

Sidewalk assessment services are available; our sidewalk assessors are assessing college campuses and cities all across the country using the Public Rights-of-Way Assessment Process—PROWAP—electronics and software. Call today to see how our services can help you identify tripping and ADA liabilities.

Outdoor Recreation Assessment Equipment

Our trail assessment products and software have been developed to enable you to locate liabilities and access issues. We are constantly developing the right tools to efficiently assess all outdoor environments for the safety and enjoyment of people of all abilities.

Surface Measurement Tools

The Rotational Penetrometer is a precision instrumented surface indenter for measuring the firmness and stability of ground and floor surfaces, such as trails, playgrounds, and carpets. The Rotational Penetrometer is the only device of its kind—a reliable, objective, portable instrument for testing surface firmness and stability.

Mapping and Signage

The Architectural Barriers Act—ABA—requires that trail signage contain Trail Access Information, which is created from data collected during trail assessments using the Universal Trail Assessment Process (UTAP) and the High Efficiency Trail Assessment Process (HETAP). All trail users find grade, cross slope, tread width, surface, and obstruction information useful for the enjoyment of trails.

Trail Training

Onsite training is available to become a certified Trail Assessment Coordinator using the Universal Trail Assessment Process (UTAP) and to become proficient in the use of the High Efficiency Trail Assessment Process (HETAP) hardware and software.

Pax Press Publications

Published books include The Manual Wheelchair Training Guide, The Powered Wheelchair Training Guide, and A Guide to Wheelchair Selection. These guides provide new and experienced users and rehabilitation professionals with valuable reference materials.

Research and Development

We are working on new technologies that will make your access issues disappear. We are currently developing an application for mobile devices that will enable the efficient assessment of all outdoor recreation environments, including picnic and camping areas, outdoor recreation trails, and access routes.

Expert Witness Services

Peter Axelson can assist as an expert witness for powered and manual mobility devices. He has knowledge and experience related to the training of mobility device users and the design, manufacturing, prescription, fitting, and usage of mobility devices. He also has the expertise to assess the environment in which the accident may have occurred.

Sidewalk Assessment

More than 400 miles of sidewalk and a dozen college campuses in 5 states have been  assessed. Allow us to help your city with all your assessment needs.

Expert Witness Services

If you or somone you know needs an expert witness for forensic testing of mobility devices, contact us today!

Press Releases

Our team has worked hard on releasing the newest versions of the trail assessment equipment and software as well as the rotational penetrometer an instrumented surface indentor. 

Wheelchair Testing

We are always performing wheelchair testing requested by manufacturers. Check out what options you have when choosing Beneficial Designs.

Hip Grip Pelvic Stabilization Device 

Need for Better Pelvic Support

Project Goal

The goal of this research project is to develop an innovative, dynamic pelvic stabilization device. The Hip Grip will consist of contoured pads that "grip" the pelvis and allow anterior/posterior tilting of the pelvis. Mounted to a wheelchair, it will offer firm support around the pelvis, while allowing the user to actively extend the lumbar spine without losing pelvic position within the wheelchair. The Hip Grip will be comfortable, adjustable, and will improve posture. The Hip Grip will link the user with the wheelchair to provide a stable base of support from which to perform functional tasks, such as reaching and bending, without risk of falling out of the wheelchair. This will potentially increase wheelchair propulsion efficiency and user independence.

Need for Better Pelvic Support

Many people who rely on specialized seating in their wheelchairs have difficulties achieving and maintaining good sitting posture. Maintaining appropriate pelvic positioning and stability are critical to achieving proper sitting posture. Commercially available positioning devices do not provide firm support for the pelvis while allowing functional movement, and often result in misalignment and areas of high pressure.

Phase I Hip Grip Prototype

In Phase I, a prototype was developed and evaluated by 20 wheelchair users during a brief clinical evaluation. The Hip Grip prototype incorporated rear, front, and side support of the pelvis in an adjustable unit which allowed the pelvis to pivot forward about the hip joint within a specified range. The Hip Grip reduced undesired pelvic movement and provided variable resistance to bring the pelvis back into its neutral posture after allowing movement. The device improved posture, comfort, and upper body function in the majority of the subjects.

Phase II Proposed R&D

The objectives of Phase II of the research project were to:

  • refine the Hip Grip based upon Phase I results;
  • perform safety and durability testing; and
  • conduct a 3-6 month clinical evaluation with 20 wheelchair users to determine the postural and functional benefits and to optimize the design to better control pelvic movement and enhance upper body function.


This work was funded by the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation in the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development at the National Institutes of Health through Small Business Innovation Research Phase I Grant #1 R43 HD36156-01
Phase II Grant # 2 R44 HD36156-02A2