Here is a great new product that will be made available worldwide soon. I always feel like parents come up with the best ideas since they are the ones that are with their 24-7 and know exactly what their needs are and have to deal with addressing those needs every day.
(click logo to go directly to product’s site)
Highlights from the article:
A mother’s invention that gave her wheelchair-bound son the chance to walk has been launched onto the worldwide market.
A Northern Ireland company has turned Debby Elnatan’s idea for a walking harness into a product that could transform the lives of countless disabled children.
Mrs Elnatan, a music therapist, came up with the concept to help her young son Rotem, who has cerebral palsy.
‘When my son was two years old, I was told by medical professionals that “he didn’t know what his legs are and has no consciousness of them”.
‘That was an incredibly difficult thing for a mother to hear. I started to walk him day after day, which was a very strenuous task for both of us. Out of my pain and desperation came the idea for the Upsee and I’m delighted to see it come to fruition.’
The Upsee allows infants and small children to stand and achieve repetitive walking training with the support of an adult.
It includes a harness for the child, which attaches to a belt worn by an adult, and specially-engineered sandals that allow the parent and child to step simultaneously, leaving their hands free for play and other tasks.
Designers, engineers, textile experts and therapists from Leckey’s Firefly team have been working on the project since 2012.
‘Short-term, the Upsee improves special needs family participation and quality of life, while research suggests it has the potential to help with physical and emotional development in the longer term,’ she said.
I think the best thing about this product is what they high light at the end, that it improves a child’s participation in their family and overall quality of life. Most of my patients’ parents really just want to see their children standing/walking so they can interact with other kids, and this gives them that opportunity. I’m sure there are other modifications that are needed for kids with severe spasticity or really weak head control or low muscle tone, but I think it’s a good start.
They are also having a free webinar for therapists or parents or anyone who wants to learn about the product. Go their site here: http://www.fireflyfriends.com/webinar
Here are some videos: