Rory Dougall, Evan Jones, Eric Jacobsohn and Ali Al-Shaer
Cardiovascular exercise achieved through arm movement alone may result in a lower cardiovascular output that is not sufficient for improving health for people with mobility impairments such as spinal cord injury (SCI). Arm Assisted Passive Leg Exercise (AAPLE) may be one method for increasing cardiovascular exercise effects.
Certain AAPLE machines are available on the market for personal or clinical use, but these machines are very costly and are unaffordable for people living in developing world countries. Also, they are typically too large and costly or most home use scenarios in North America. For these reasons, an economical and easy to build AAPLE bike – assembled with globally available parts and materials – has been designed.
The final design approach for the exercise machine is a combination of ground up design and the integration of existing recycled bicycle parts wherever possible. The idea behind the design will lend itself to a ‘kit’ type of product. The customer will be able to acquire or fabricate select specialized pieces and from there, modify an existing bicycle and parts to serve as an exercise machine. The custom components have been designed out of materials that are easy to work with and do not require any special fabrication machinery or tools.
This project could lead to a low cost product that could be used to potentially offset some of the secondary side effects of SCI, improve people’s quality of life and health, and further promote research on the benefits of passive leg exercise.