2 Prosthetic Options for Athletes & Fitness Hobbyists – What to Know

The evolution of bionic devices ensures that sport-specific versions of prosthetics are available regardless of the type and need. Therefore, there is a specialized prosthetic that will help you perform better no matter what sport you play. 

Athletes can review several options for upper limb, knee, and foot prosthetics, which are appropriate for amputees and those requiring customized support. These prosthetic devices can help those who participate in sports, such as athletics, golf, cycling, hockey, fishing, and baseball.

Competitive prosthetics

The iLimb is one of the more fascinating prosthetic advancements for competitive athletes. It’s a bionic hand that allows finger and thumb movements to aid in a range of grips. This prosthetic is controllable via a mobile app that connects to the artificial hand.

Meanwhile, a microprocessor controls the Rheo Knee to stabilize movement, especially on challenging terrain. This prosthetic device also makes it easier for the individual to perform complicated motions like moving backwards and squat-to-standing movements.

Likewise, the Symbionic Leg is another prosthetic apparatus that combines microprocessors in the knee and ankle joints. This sports technology helps the athlete gain better stability and quick recovery after stumbling and also provides symmetry with the other leg. Other prosthetics for athletics include the Power Knee and the Proprio Foot, to name a few.

The Power Knee is the world’s first motorized prosthetic knee. It functions as an integrated extension of its user while using battery-powered capabilities to deal with asymmetrical movement and lost muscle capability. This ingenious device also has AI systems and motion sensors that help it adapt to the user’s walking style.

The Proprio Foot, on the other hand, is an adaptive ankle for moderately-active amputees. It has a dynamic carbon foot blade that adapts to the terrain and increases toe clearance in every swing. Proprio has three levels and has an accompanying app for iOS devices.

Cutting-edge prosthetics

Competitive athletes and fitness-minded hobbyists can take advantage of the benefits that come with sports prosthetics. One of these technological advancements is the carbon fibre blade for below-the-knee amputees. While there are fibre blades for casual walkers, there is a different version of which is meant for short-distance running. The latter features a curved shape that flexes every time the runner needs to push off from the ground.

Meanwhile, above-the-knee amputees use a combination of knee and foot sports prosthetics that remain durable even in slippery conditions and rugged terrains. It has adjustable ankles and shock absorbers depending on the athlete’s preference. There’s also the Moto Knee with hydraulic dampening for adjustments to different speeds. This high-impact device has interchangeable parts for varying motions.

Find the suitable prosthetic

Since sports prosthetics are not ideal for everyday use, you can seek the advice of your physician to pair the right devices for your specific needs. Without a doubt, modern technology gave rise to sports prosthetics that establish an equal playing field. However, if you want the latest prosthetics in the market, check out what Lindhe Xtend has to offer.

Found by swimmer and triple-amputee Christoffer Lindhe, they offer the Xtend Foot that adapts to various terrains and the Xtend Connect, which allows the user to disconnect their prothesis to dress comfortably. You can also purchase the Xtend Cover to protect the prosthetic and the Xtend Testrig that makes you comfortable walking in various terrain. 

If you are looking for foot prosthesis solutions for athletes and fitness hobbyists, get in touch with us to see how we can help.

The Advancement of Prosthetic Limb Developments in 2019 – What to Know

The production and improvement of prosthetic limbs are one of the biggest challenges in healthcare as engineers try to match nature. It aims to fulfil the same function as a natural part of the body, but even after centuries of development, the road to bionic limbs still fall short in functionality. Nevertheless, the future is bright as technology is changing the shape of prosthetics bit by bit.

Advances in technology are improving industries and the lives of many in various forms. Part of its significant improvement is seen in prosthetic limbs, where many are steadily breaking free from the limitations of basic attachments back in the day. In recent years, and in future predictions, artificial limbs are incorporating technologies that enhance the limb’s movement.

What Do Prosthetic Limbs Look Like Today?

Prosthetic limbs were once a tool to restore the appearance and function of an amputee’s missing limb. While it did not bring back full motion and the sense of touch, there were sport-specific prostheses that enabled amputees to continue their way of life. The designs were also made to enhance performance and reduce any risk of injury, which is why prosthesis plays a significant role in managing mobility.  

Its advancement through the years are significant, which is seen in one of the first revolutionary prosthetic designs back in the 1990s. Released in the United States, a microprocessor-controlled joint prosthetics revolutionized its entire function as it can now automatically adapt to an amputee’s unique needs.

For instance, utilizing a microprocessor-controlled joint for the legs can encourage the artificial limb to mimic the person’s specific walking patterns, increasing mobility and natural leg movement overall.  Advances in materials have also improved the design of prosthetic limbs, making the material lighter in weight and providing more skin-like coverings for a more natural finish. To the untrained eye, most prosthetic limbs are hard to distinguish from natural arms and legs.

Advances in Prosthetic Limbs and What to Expect in the Future

Prosthetics in recent years are more comfortable and highly-engineered like never before, but its production is moving at an electric pace with the rise of neuroprosthetics. This introduction has turned brain-controlled prosthetics as an essential field of research.

The idea is to utilize electrode rays and place it in the brain, nerves or muscles as a digital means of translating the message between the body and the brain. This means that through brainpower alone, amputees have a chance at controlling movement.

Stimulating Touch as the Next Frontier in Neural Prosthetics

A significant aspect that acts as a roadblock for the progress of neural prosthetics is the sense of touch. A lack of sensory feedback will compromise an amputee’s ability to develop dexterity, which is why different labs from across the world are focusing on developing electrically stimulating prosthetic limbs.

The UChicago research team, for instance, has a $3.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to cover their study on the brain’s somatosensory cortex. By studying how the system transmits sensory information from the body’s nerves to the brain, the possibility of creating prosthetics that stimulate the nerves through electrodes in real-time is becoming highly likely. 

Through time and more advances in technology, the next bionic human maybe just on the horizon. 

If you’re looking for foot prosthesis solutions, get in touch with Lindhe Xtend to see how we can help!

Post-Amputation Guide: How to Care For Your Wounds – What to Know

While the loss of a limb can be physically and emotionally challenging, many people who have undergone amputation are still able to live healthy and active lives. Recuperation and rehabilitation will follow faster if the patient is armed with proper self-care information. 

Below are essential tips on how to best care for the wound after operation:

Post-Amputation Wound Care

The first and most critical step towards a patient’s recovery is caring for the injury and the residual limb. Any surgical wound, such as amputation, is at risk of becoming infected. This is because of the presence of germs and other bacteria that can enter the wound site, which can lead to other complications. Your injury and how it heals will depend on the amputation location. Keep in mind that the speed in which a wound heals varies among patients. It also depends on several factors, such as the amputation’s location and the limb’s condition during surgery. 

While at the hospital, pay attention as to how your doctors and nurses care for your wound. They will also give you special instructions before your discharge so that you’ll be able to care for yourself once you leave. Most amputees are inserted with a drainage tube to remove fluids after the surgery, which you will need to drain throughout the day. You’ll also need to change the gauze dressings regularly. If the amputation causes skeletal injuries to the residual limb, surgeons will use pins for bone alignment, and these devices will need to be sterilized as well. 

Remember to wash and sanitize your hands before handling the injured area. When cleaning, use a mild soap and water and never use alcohol-based agents. You can dab with a sterile gauze pad or a soft cloth but never scrub the wound. Be careful when washing the limb and prevent it from getting soaked. After cleaning, make sure that the area is completely dry because dampness is a breeding ground for bacteria. Never shave around the site and always check for ingrown hairs. 

Preparing for Prosthetics

As your healing progresses, you’ll need to schedule a follow-up session with your doctor so that they can remove the sutures and examine the progress of your skin. To help your limb better adjust to tolerance and pressure, do mild exercise, and gently massage the area every day. Wearing compression stockings or bands also helps prevent swelling. If you want to wear prosthetics, you will undergo a series of fittings and physical therapy. 

Take Note of Red Flags

Infections after amputation are severe and can even be life-threatening. Always check your skin for any swelling and tearing. Call your doctor immediately if you notice the following:

    • The residual limb is getting redder
    • The bleeding from the wound
    • The intense, sharp pains that don’t respond with medication
    • The wound is spreading and getting larger
    • The skin is warmer or colder to the touch than usual
    • The thick brownish or grey discharge

Undergoing an amputation is both life-changing and overwhelming. Don’t stress and allow yourself time to get used to your new routine and resume your daily activities. Having the right mindset and proper self-care is the key to a more comfortable and faster recovery.

If you’re looking for foot prosthesis solutions, get in touch with Lindhe Xtend to see how we can help!

3 Tips for Amputee Rider’s to Get Back on the Bike – What to Know

Your motorcycle adventures don’t need to end with a leg amputation. On the other hand, although many riders have lost a limb, they can still hop right on their motorcycles can go for a ride. It’s a matter of making modifications to your motorcycle so it can comfortably adjust to your needs.

The first step is to consult with a local bike shop that specializes in custom bikes. Discuss your specific needs, abilities, and other physical concerns. Because of the limb loss, an amputee rider will use controls on a motorcycle differently than in the past In this article, we will share common bike customizations amputee riders can make to help them get back on the road. Below are some common modifications to consider:

1. Gear shifter
The gear shifter on a standard bike is operated by the left foot with a lift and push of the toes. Riders with below-knee (BK) prostheses can address this issue by adding a heel extension so that they can change gears by both pushing down the heel and toe. Some motorcycles, such as the Harley-Davidson, already offer this setting on their cruiser models. In some cases, riders with left leg prostheses can choose to move the gear shifter to the right side for more convenience.

A more recent alternative is the Kliktronic electronic shifter system. It is a gear changer that has a convenient push-button gear on the left handlebar. The entire kit is removable and can be transferred to another bike.

2. Brake
On a standard motorcycle, the rear wheel brake is operated by a toe lever for the right foot. For right leg amputees, they can either modify the right brake pedal to fit their prostheses or move the brake system entirely to the left side. They can also mount an additional hand brake lever on the handlebar. Newer bikes, such as those manufactured by BMW already come with an anti-lock brake system that seamlessly connects the front and rear brakes.

3. Above-knee challenges
For riders with above-knee (AK) prostheses, they face these two challenges: how to keep the bike upright when stopped, and how to operate the side stand. To address these concerns, some riders choose a prosthetic knee that is stable in an extended position and that connects the side stand to a hand lever extension below the tank. Some AK riders opt to ride a trike instead. It’s not the same as a bike, but sidecars give more stability while providing the riders freedom of movement.

Getting yourself and your motorcycle ready after a limb loss could be quite challenging, but it is certainly not an impossibility. With a few drawings, your trusted bike builder will be able to give recommendations and make adjustments for your motorcycle. It takes a great deal of mental and physical preparation, but with regular practice, you will be able to experience the wonderful thrill of being on the road again!

If you need help in choosing the best prosthesis for your biking adventures, get in touch with us and see our range of products. Our team will be happy to assist you and connect you with our distributors worldwide.

If you’re looking for foot prosthesis solutions for this winter, get in touch with Lindhe Xtend to see how we can help!