The latest in exoskeleton technology was demonstrated recently at an event showcasing its potential to improve the lives of sufferers of neurological and multiple trauma injuries.
Hosted at STEPS Rehabilitation in Sheffield, in conjunction with law firm Stewarts, the event saw medical practitioners interested in using the technology to improve their patients’ recovery receive demonstrations of the REX, ReWalk 6.0 and Ekso GT.
Simon Kindleyside and Dale Messenger took centre stage to demonstrate how they operated the exoskeletons and explained the positive impact that the suits have had on their lives.
Kindleyside was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour in 2013 that left him paralysed from the waist down. Earlier this year, he became the first paralysed man to walk the London Marathon route. He demonstrated the REX and ReWalk.6 exoskeletons at the STEPS and Stewarts event.
“It’s made a dramatic change,” he explained. “This technology has enabled me to accomplish things that I never dreamt possible after I became paralysed. I’m on a mission to share my experiences of this incredible technology, not just with professionals working with paralysed people, but to inspire others in the same position as me to believe that anything is possible!”
Stewarts represented Messenger in his case against the Ministry of Defence and secured compensation for the purchase and replacement of an Ekso. Ben Rogers, a partner at the Leeds Office, commented: “We have a number of clients looking to purchase exoskeleton devices in the next few months.”
Jules Leahy, a founder and director of STEPS, added: “We pride ourselves on offering clients access to innovative technology combined with the support and expertise of specialist rehabilitation team. Having access to exoskeleton technology as early as possible in the rehabilitation process is hugely beneficial to clients both physically and emotionally. The way the body re-learns movement is by lots of repetition. If we can put somebody in one of these walking suits its less physically demanding for therapists too.”