Alirio Mijares Uribe, Andres Pulido, Julia Schindler, Nguyen Hoang, Nicholas Mas, Sophia Ruckle, and Steven Swingle
Though using an elliptical during rehabilitative therapy is a proven to be more helpful than traditional therapy alone, existing assistive devices are unable to provide constant and consistent support as the patient moves vertically and laterally. Rise is fixed to a wall or ceiling with a stationary steel frame above an elliptical. The unique hexagonal column and triangular legs provide a weightlifting aesthetic and structural stability. Mounted motors adjust the length of polyester cables using two spools, raising or lowering the user from either side to account for changes in vertical or lateral position measured with elliptical encoders and force sensors placed on elliptical pedals. Cable length is adjusted cyclically to provide consistent support throughout use. Force and distance sensors are also implemented to observe cable tension and patient security, ensuring that the weight offset the user experiences is consistent. To begin using the structure, the user is simply seated underneath the outstretched arm in a chair or wheelchair and strapped into a nylon upper body harness. Once connected to cables by several weight bearing carabiners, the winch raises the patient vertically, and the primary motors move the patient over the elliptical laterally. Patient dimensions and the percentage of weight supported are controlled by the user or trainer using a tablet application. The indicated percentage of offset body weight is then achieved by dynamically adjusting the tension in the cables. Tablet controls and hard-wired emergency stop buttons are always accessible to both the patient and therapy personnel.