AT Resources

Assistive technology (AT) commonly refers to both assistive and adaptive devices, which may be either high or low technology, and various services such as evaluations, fabrication and training. Examples of high through low technology assistive devices which farmers and ranchers with disabilities might find beneficial, could range from mounted chair lifts to easy grip hand tools respectively.

Database Resources

Resource Sheets

Assistive Technology Resouce ideas grouped into categories.

Accessible Gardening

All Terrain Vehicles (ATVs)

  • Ultimate All-Terrain Test
    Successful Farming magazine editors took a week to test and evaluate several ATVs. See their comments and specific ATV comparison test results. (2/08)



  • Aquaculture and Disability, PDF
    So you think aquaculture is a new concept? You might be surprised to learn that the Japanese, Chinese, Romans, Egyptians, and Mayan Indians all farmed fish for food prior to 2000 BC. (04/05)


  • “Farming with Arthritis” (link to the streaming video)
    Researchers at the Missouri Arthritis Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (MARRTC) put together this educational video (also available on DVD) to help people in the agricultural industry deal with arthritis. The video titled “Farming with Arthritis”, features farmers in real-life scenarios such as building, planting crops, working with equipment and performing other physical tasks that demonstrate the types of movements performed daily. It is also a useful tool for physicians and other health-care providers in better understanding the challenges specific to farming population. (3/08)
    This video was produced by the Missouri Arthritis Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (MARRTC) and Missouri AgrAbility with a grant from the U. S. Department of Education’s National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research under special project number H133B980022, 1998-2003. For a copy of the video, contact Missouri AgrAbility at 1-800-995-8503.
  • Hand in Hand
    (Link takes you to the Farm Journal web site, for an article written about farming with arthritis in their February, 2003 issue.)
  • Products and packaging that have received a favorable review and carry the Arthritis Foundation Ease-of-Use Commendation Logo (08/04).

Farm and Ranch Tools

Fencing, Cattle Guards, Corals, etc.

Grain Bins

Hay Making

Poultry Farming


Skid Steer Loaders

  • Controls Refine Great Skid-Steer Power
    Cab and control refinements put a variety of weights, horsepowers and hydraulic capabilities at your fingertips in 1,600- to 2,200-pound skid-steer loaders. Article features and compares 32 models of mid-sized skid-steers. May 1, 2006, By Larry Stewart, Executive Editor. (Link takes you to the article posted on the Construction Equipment web site. 6/06)

Utility Vehicles

  • How do Utility Vehicles measure up?
    (Link takes you to the Farm Industry News web site, for a comparison review of eight popular utility vehicles, October 2002.)
  • Side by side: Utility vehicles (03/05)
    Purchasing a utility vehicle can help manage many projects around your farm or ranch with ease. The utility vehicle market is exploding with a variety of manufacturers, and new ones continue to enter the field. Long-time makers continue to hone their products with new features. Check out photos, specifications and prices on new models from 18 manufacturers, from Bobcat to Yamaha.
  • Load Warriors
    “Easier to operate than an ATV, a good utility vehicle (UV) can haul moderate loads, scramble over terrain and get you from farm to field quickly … ” (Link takes you to the Farm Industry Web site, where 10 farmers from around the country review 10 different utility vehicles, November 2005.)
  • The Mid-January, 2006, issue of the Farm Journal Magazine had a great comparison article about utility vehicles titled “Two By Two, Utility vehicles take on the farm market”.
    (Link takes you to the article posted on the AgWeb web site. 3/06)
  • Ultimate All-Terrain Test:” Successful Farming’s team of trail riders and engineers put several utility vehicles (UVs) and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) through a series of tests. What they found may be of interest to AgrAbility staff and/or farmers and ranchers with a disability when considering these vehicles (2/08).

Wheel Chairs

Plans for Equipment Modifications

Information regarding equipment modifications that AgrAbility Staff might find useful.

  • Hand Operated Clutch Lever
  • The National AgrAbility Project staff have been assisting the Distributed Collaborative Product Development Project hosted at Georgia Tech University with their “GALE – Gator with Assistive Living Enhancements” project. The GALE project is developing a hand control, a wheelchair lift, and a pivoting seat for a John Deere Gator utility vehicle. (1/05)
    • (8/05) Georgia Tech has successfully wrapped up the GALE (Gator with Assistive Living Enhancements) project with a live demonstration of 3 working prototypes! The results can be viewed at
  • Northend-Mobility provided the National AgrAbility Project with information about modifications they made to a John Deere lawn tractor and Gator for a C5-6 quad. For more information and pictures of these modifications, please check out the links below (3/05):
  • The Colorado AgrAbility Project recently completed modifications on a Kawasaki Mule for
    a client. Read about the project and view pictures by checking out theWord documented linked below (6/06):

  • Biological Systems Engineering (BSE) students at UW-Madison design a hand control for a utility vehicle working in cooperation with the National AgrAbility Project. You can preview the report here and look at their design (7/06).
  • Freshman Student Design Projects (2/07)

Related Technolgy Web Sites

Funding Resources

  • The Guide to Financing Business and/or Assistive Technology (PDF) offers funding resources available through public disability-related funding sources, private disability-related programs or charitable organizations, USDA, and the Small Business Administration. The Guide also provides numerous examples of how AgrAbility clients used the funding awarded (1/08)

Liability Issues

The National AgrAbility Project, 2002, 2003, and 2006 National Training Workshops (NTW) each had a presentation covering liability issues. Some of this information has been collected and is presented on the liability resources web page.

However, we would like to know what other issues regarding “liability” you may have. Please contact us or send us your thoughts using the Contact Us page.

Secondary Injuries and Illnesses

Recently (2006-2007), the National AgrAbility staff conducted focus groups and interviewed several farmers and ranchers who had experienced a secondary injury or illness. This purpose of this effort was to better understand the causes of the secondary injury or illness, and to also assist in the creation of educational material to help prevent future injury or illness. Most of the farmers and ranchers in the focus groups or who were interviewed had experienced a leg/arm amputation, or were using a wheelchair due to a spinal cord injury.

Below are three documents which summarize some of our findings to date. We hope you find this information beneficial.

This next document summarizes some questions you may wish to ask your prosthetist.

The information below was gathered by the Easter Seal Society of Iowa’s Farm Family Rehabilitation Management (FaRM) Program a few years ago. The documents pertain to Secondary Injury and Illnesses, and are collected here for your convenience and information only. (Note: Six of the following links take you to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], National Ag Safety Database [NASD] web site. The remaining link takes you to the Extension-AgrAbility web site at Iowa State.)

Slips and Falls

If you would like to share your ideas, comments, or be interviewed during a future focus group session, please contact Contact Us.