CASE STUDY: 20-year-old with complex disabilities set to take on a Parkrun thanks to Jiraffe
A Derbyshire youngster with complex disabilities has her sights set on taking part in a Parkrun event after bespoke equipment provided by Sheffield-based postural support specialist Jiraffe helped her regain the ability to walk independently.
Alice Lee, 20, lives with a CASK Gene Mutation, which has resulted in complex disabilities. As a result, she needs help with all everyday tasks and is fed through her gastrostomy.
Due to her condition, Alice gradually lost the ability to walk on her own, despite initially being able to at an early age.
However, following a recommendation by one of Jiraffe’s expert Product Advisors, Alice can now walk independently once more using a Pacer Gait Trainer by Rifton and Supine Stander by Jenx – distributed in the UK by Sheffield-based postural support specialist Jiraffe.
Thanks to the Pacer, Alice is now able to do what she loves best – getting outdoors and taking part in running events. She has now set her sights on completing a 5km Parkrun once mass participation events have restarted in the UK after the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Pacer Gait Trainer by Rifton is designed to encourage correct positioning by providing the dynamic weight-bearing and weight-shifting needed for a more natural gait pattern and easier stepping.
Alice’s mum, Joanne, said: “Alice absolutely loves getting outside in her Pacer. Not only does it have all the benefits of providing physio, but it also gives her the freedom and ability to be independently mobile outside whilst maintaining her posture and keeping her safe.
“We love that during lockdown two shielding, she can still get out with her pacer even if it’s just round our little estate.
“Alice takes part in lots of events and races with me both running and pushing her in her running wheelchair. When our physio suggested the Pacer, it was perfect for Alice! Alice is very much part of our running group Clumber Runners, as I always run with her, and the group is very excited to see Alice walking!
“Her first event using the Pacer should have been the Superhero Triathlon, which was sadly cancelled due to Covid-19. But we have everything crossed for next year – hopefully we can build up her distance so she can take part in her first Parkrun independently once it restarts again.”
Jiraffe is the UK distribution division of Jenx, a company which has been researching, designing and manufacturing innovative developmental postural equipment to support children with specific postural needs since 1982.
Richard Harvey, National Clinical Training Manager at Jiraffe, commented: “We’re thrilled that the Pacer has given Alice the opportunity to walk independently outdoors.
“The Pacer encourages progress for all of its users, so that they can go wherever they like without anything standing in their way – encouraging social inclusion and activity. The Pacer can be adjusted in a variety of ways in order to be tailored to the user’s needs, making it the ideal choice to increase mobility in early childhood.”