An Introduction To Walkers
Typically, these users are unable to walk without walking aid due to a lack of control and strength in the required muscles. Besides therapy, walkers are used in indoors and outdoors activities, empowering the user to move around independently.
An Introduction To Gait Trainers
A child gait trainer is therefore not always well suited for activities in daily life, and such products are not used as much outside of the clinical and therapeutic setting. They are often essential in very early and critical phases of physical therapy to gain motor function and skills. Subsequently, users begin progressing towards independent walking with or without aids.
A Difference in Terminology
Is it optimal to use one type of device in therapy and another one outside of it? Is there a solution that addresses the functions of both devices?
The Need For An Integrated Solution
Strength gained progressively through improved everyday mobility and activities should enable further progresses in therapy. The mental energy gained through a more mobile lifestyle with greater autonomy serves as “fuel” and motivation which in turn serves to sustain a higher level of therapeutic effort and achievements.
The Benefits of using a Singular Device
Currently, users swap between devices when moving between home, leisure, school and therapy. It would help them to rather work with one personal device, acutely adjusted and tweaked to their individual needs. This device should also evolve with them. It is part of their life, not just a tool which is quickly swapped with another one, based on the situation at hand.
A highly personal device the user knows and trusts instinctively, like an athlete is in tune with his gear or a musician with his instrument. It needs to be sophisticated and should avoid a purely additive approach to features. Such a walker / gait trainer should promote particularly its usage in leisure activities, which are most valuable for development, enjoyment and motivation.
Bridging the Gap Between Gait Trainers and Walkers
Therefore, the child walkers and/or child gait trainers must have a variety of adjustable support features, but these should be designed innovatively in such a way that the device remains compact, light and very suitable for activities of daily life.
Designing a User Centered Device
However, it must be ‘roadworthy’ also in outdoor terrain, and rugged. Additionally, it should be sleek, instead of bulky and intimidating. The design should enable it to evolve with the users according to their equally changing capabilities and needs; it should physically grow with them for as long as feasible.
Users should be able to identify with the design emotionally and aesthetically as it is typically the case with consumer mobility products, say a mountain bike. This aspect is rarely considered in adaptive equipment. It should promote functionally and emotionally active participation of the user in a wide variety of settings.
Introducing Voyar’s Frog Walker
FROG is conceptualised to be both a medical walker and gait trainer for cerebral palsy and other mobility impairments and to enhance foremost independence of the users; to continuously empower them.