Exercise machine designed for those with limited mobility

Dylan Grant / February 27, 2020

This is what the AAPLEWalk machine currently looks like.
(Dylan Grant / BCIT News)

BCIT has designed a new exercise machine for people with disabilities, specifically those in wheelchairs.

The Active Arm Passive Leg Exercise Machine (AAPLEwalk) is the first of its kind and allows the person to get in a cardio-vascular exercise even if they don’t have use of their legs.

Similar looking to an elliptical, the AAPLEwalk holds you upright and simultaneously moves your legs while you move your arms.

“Particularly those who cant stand on their own or walk so its sometimes hard to be able to get an appropriate level of cardio-vascular fitness using existing machines” – Dr. Jaimie Borisoff – Rehab Engineering Design

Dr. Jaimie Borisoff the developer of the AAPLEWalk machine
(Dylan Grant / BCIT News)

A key part of the machine is the emotional benefit it has, as people who are normally sitting are able to stand now and go for a walk.

Currently the machines that are available for people in wheelchairs to help with their exercise are requiring them to stay in a seated position which leads to a risk in chronic arm issues.

In 2-3 months AAPLEWalk will be taken to ICORD the world leading research for spinal cord injuries. So, people in wheel chairs and other disabilities will be able to try the machine out.

And eventually Dr. Borisoff would like to make this a commercial product for either rehab centres, gyms, or people to personally buy if they have the space. He would also like to make this a low cost item.