We hear about it all the time, an athlete goes down from a neck injury, he is holed up in a hospital bed, neck and back in traction. The doctor strolls to a micro-phone or the team representative and states the worst, “he will likely never walk again“. Now, a new “tech” breakthrough offers more than just hope…it offers the feeling of life again.
This has never been a normal “blog“. I rarely go over the top, I rarely post anything to jump my numbers to the point where my monthly money climbs out of the abyss, so it should come as no surprise that I jump off of the Miami Dolphins and talk about something that is so much more than simply football, yet still relates to the game we love so much and often take for granted the costly payments our athletes sometimes make…or our friends and families must endure.
It’s an uncommon occurrence in a brutal sport such as football but it does happen. From high-school to college to the NFL, to everyday citizens across the world who bare the task of coming to terms with permanent paralysis. The Miami Project is one of those groups dedicated to find a cure for paralysis. Founded by Nick Buoniconti after his own son Marc suffered a paralyzing neck injury at The Citadel.
This new tech invention from Israel is offering at least a mental break from the strife of paralysis. It’s called ReWalk. A fashioned exoskeleton suit that hums softly, is allowing those paralyzed from the waste down to walk again. More like the suit from Iron Man and crossed with that of a crab, the suit allows a person to be mechanically “stood up” out of a wheelchair and then walk.
Invented by Amit Goffer, who was paralyzed in an auto accident years ago, the suit uses body sensors and wrist watch type device that the user can adjust to walk, climb stairs, sit, or simply stand. While the suit will not aid the patient in his recovery physically, it does have some physical benefits.
A person sitting down has a compressed diagram that does not allow the person to fully expand his or her lungs. Standing allows the lungs to fully open on inhalation. Furthermore, blood flow throughout the body works better in upright positions as well as does abdominal muscle retention.
Perhaps the biggest advantage however is the mental breakthrough. Looking at your wife, your father, your friends, husband, the world from a standing position, eye to eye alone can make a person feel whole and normal. The view of the world changes as well. Issues with wheel chairs and seating also is taken out of the equation.
Ironically, it is Goffer himself that can’t use the contraption as he does not have full functionality of his upper limbs. Yet it is a man who sought an option to finding a far off cure that may indeed provide a big lift for paralyzed persons both in and away from the athletic community. You can read the full MSN article here.