Check out this new *smart* wheel developed by MIT. Pretty impressive! Would be especially helpful for amputees cycling in hilly or mountainous areas.
Sending a huge shout out and congratulations to POA’s **MeiMei White!** MeiMei finished FIRST in the Youth Category at the Paratriathlon Regional Championship held in Clermont, FL on March 23rd. She is now one of the Top Contenders for the National Championship!!! WOW! Great job, MeiMei! We are so proud of you!! Article from USA Triathlon Florida Region website
Three of our POA patients – Ellie, MeiMei and Gustavo, participated in the USA Triathlon Florida Region Paratriathlon Camp held in Orlando July 13-15, 2012. POA’s Mabio Costa, an accomplished paratriathlete, was a guest speaker at the Camp. He was there to offer encouragement and provide inspiration to the challenged athletes in attendance.
Way to go, Team POA!
Chris and Dana Self were featured on CNN’s Piers Morgan program last night as part of a segment on George W. Bush and his commitment to support our troops. President Bush recently hosted the 2nd Warrior 100K mountain bike ride, and Chris has participated in both of them.
Chris Self on CNN's Piers Morgan Show
POA patient Chris Self was one of the participants featured in this documentary on the recent 100K Bike Ride with former President George W. Bush to raise awareness of Wounded Warriors. Click here to view the FOX News documentary>>
If you rode a bike before your amputation, you can ride again! Depending on how serious a rider you want to be, there are several things you can do to make that happen. The biggest issue an amputee encounters when attempting to ride a bike is that it’s difficult to keep the prosthetic foot on the pedal. The simplest fix is one I read about on the website of a former police officer who lost his leg above the knee (it’s the one I use). You just wrap Velcro around the bike pedal and attach a large piece to the sole of shoe. Mount the bike by standing next to it and swinging your prosthetic leg over the seat. Place your prosthetic foot firmly on the pedal, push off with your sound foot, and you’re off! Your foot should stay securely on the pedal even when you encounter slight inclines and small bumps in the road.
Some amputees (mostly BK’s) prefer to put a strap or cage on the pedal. The problem I’ve encountered with that (I’m AK) is that the heel of my foot tends to turn inward and hit against the bike. You could solve that problem by attaching a pedal extender.
For serious bikers who like to travel off of paved roads and bike paths, check out the following link: http://www.heathermills.eu/forum/index.php?showtopic=4371
Kids often ask Scout Bassett, of Palm Desert, California, if she wishes she had two normal legs. Bassett, 18, answers, “No. I have never known anything different, and it would seem weird to me. Besides, if it weren’t for the missing leg, I wouldn’t have the opportunities I have today!”
What she means is she has learned important lessons about overcoming big challenges to reach your goals. “When you are missing a leg, it teaches you to appreciate little things—like being able to walk and run,” she says.
Scout has faced big challenges. Born in China, she was left at an orphanage before her first birthday suffering from terrible burns. Her right leg was especially damaged, and doctors amputated it above the knee.
She remembers being hungry all the time at the orphanage. As soon as she was old enough to get around, she was put to work mopping floors, feeding babies, and washing dishes.
And she had to do all that with an artificial leg that didn’t work very well. “It was made of things you’d find in your garage,” she recalls. “Belt straps, masking tape, nuts and bolts. It didn’t feel very good, and clanked, and even fell off sometimes.”
Then, when she was seven years old, a family in Michigan adopted her. Everything about her new life in the United States was better, including the improved artificial legs her parents got for her.
First she got a better leg for everyday activities. It was okay for some things, but she still couldn’t play soccer or basketball.
When she was 14, she got a high-tech leg made for sports and put it to the test right away in a race for disabled athletes. “I remember being terrified because this was my first time,” she says. “But my doctor said, ‘You have to start somewhere.'” Read more…