Children and Young People's Occupational Therapy Service

Specialist Seating

Provision of Specialist Seating

Our Occupational Therapists can support you with identifying if there is a need for specialist seating to meet your child’s needs. We can also advise, loan and review specialist seating where necessary.

What is Specialist Seating?

Specialist seating is a system of supportive or adaptive chair options to meet specific needs.

5 circles each detailing a benefit of specialist seating. Circled 1, Protect Posture. Circle 2, maintain posture. Circle 3, enable access. Circle 4, support activities and learning. Circle 5, aid social interaction.

We use the term ‘specialist’ as these types of provisions are to meet specific and individual needs using seating equipment where alternatives and standard options are insufficient. Across the city, the Birmingham Chailey Therapy Seating Assessment Tool is used for consistency across services enabling us to provide the right service.

4 boxes arranged inline. Box 1, right service. Box 2, right time. 3, right need. 4, right support
How might this differ from seating provided by other services?

Within our service, we look to manage and maintain needs which are generally related to longer term needs or disability.

NHS Occupational Therapists or Physiotherapists may also look at seating to meet various needs and goals regarding development or acute needs (medical), these types of approaches usually have a programme or plan for you to follow over a set period of time, with guidance from your therapist.

Some seating companies may also provide seating guidance, if you choose to consider this route it is very important that you check the credentials of those providing advice to ensure that your child’s needs are being met safely and appropriately.

Specialist Chair Adjustment

A postural seating system has been provided for your child to support activities of daily living within the home.

These products are designed to be adjusted as your child grows. There are certain adjustments you as a parent/carer can do using guidance in your chair’s manual at home. Theses include:

  • Seat Depth
  • Hip Pads
  • Raise/Lower Footplate
  • Raise/Lower Backrest
  • Adjust Headrest
  • Raise/Lower Armrests

To make an adjustment to your child’s seat you must follow the steps in the manual and use the appropriate tools provided with your specific chair, if this is not attached to the chair you will need to identify the make and model in order to search for the online manual. A list of companies is also located on our website. You can identify this by looking at:

  • The frame of the chair.
  • Stickers on the chair.
  • Seating handover form.
  • OT recommendation sheet

If there has been a change to your child’s condition or presentation, you are concerned about safety or you have questions. Please contact the CYPOT Advice line via our telephone or email details.


Duty and Advice Line – 0121 303 3865
Email us –

Care for Your Specialist Seating

Your child’s specialist seating is loaned by our equipment provider Medequip. Alongside the maintenance and support you receive for your chair by Medequip, it is essential that we keep seating in the best condition possible to minimize breakage and damage. You must ensure that your specialist seating is cared for, appropriately cleaned and not misused.

It is important to consult the full manufacturers guidance within the manual or via the website to ensure you are caring for your seating appropriately, using correct washing settings or accessing clips and buckles for removal/repositioning.

If you are having difficulty locating cleaning information, manuals or have a query, please contact the CYPOT service for support.

What is a Seating Review?

Following your Occupational Therapy assessment and a loan of home seating has been provided, your therapist completes a handover form of relevant information to add you to the review log. The review log is monitored by the CYPOT service.

A seating review is completed annually, every 12 months and you will be contacted by a member of the service to arrange either a virtual or a face to face appointment at this time.

The purpose of the seating review is to ensure that:

  • the seat is still meeting the identified needs
  • the seat is the correct size
  • the accessories applied to the seat are still working

Your child and their chair must be present at their seating review

Your child’s seating appointment is very important and as there will be limited appointments within your time period. If your offered appointment is not suitable you must contact the service to discuss if an alternative can be offered, as soon as possible.