Thai Massage for the Elderly

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Having recently completed a very energetic Thai Yoga Massage Certification, I find myself with the conviction that giving Thai Massage must be a young person’s game. It’s energetic, agile and requires a certain amount of flexibility. Receiving massage, however, is a pleasure that doesn’t expire no matter how advanced your years are. I personally can’t wait until I’m old enough to be solely on the receiving end of the massage train.

Depending on your physical abilities, limitations and your reasons for getting a massage, a good masseuse can tailor a sequence to your needs, so that you leave feeling refreshed, lightly pummelled and fully relaxed every time.

There are many different styles of massage that can be good for the elderly, and it’s good to do a little research before you spend the money, so you know what style is going to be most beneficial. Today we talk about Thai Massage, what to expect, and how this particular style can be particularly good for health and vitality.

Massage for elderly

What should I expect from a Thai Massage?

Thai Massage is generally a more vigorous style of massage, often likened to “passive yoga”, in that a lot of the movements replicate yoga asana (postures). The massage is done fully clothed, and can last anywhere from one hour to two and a half hours, depending on whether you want the full works, or a shorter session. The receiver simply needs to relax entirely, and the masseuse does all the work (even when the receiver is much larger than the masseuse!). It’s best to choose a masseuse with therapeutic qualifications – a certificate in Thai Massage doesn’t guarantee their knowledge of the therapeutic application of massage techniques, and you want to make sure you’re in safe hands, particularly if you have any physical conditions.

A good masseuse should ask you if you have any physical conditions such as high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, any injuries or chronic pain. They should then be able to adapt the massage sequence to keep the massage safe, comfortable and hopefully help with some of the issues you are dealing with.

A full body thai massage means just that – every area of your body is massaged. The masseuse will work through a sequence following the pattern of stretching out the muscle, kneading or palming the energy lines, pressing (lightly or firmly) on certain points along the energy lines to temporarily stem the blood flow, then allow it to rush back in with more strength and vitality.

The massage will usually start from the feet and work up to the head, as Thailand is a primarily Buddhist country, and in Buddhist tradition, the feet are the lowest part of the body and therefore the most unclean. It is considered rude in Buddhist tradition to point your feet towards the Buddha.

The masseuse works the energy lines on the legs, massages both legs individually then both together in two leg stretches (inversions, or going upside down, should be avoided in the case of heart disease or high blood pressure), then moves on to the stomach, chest and arms. Next is the side position, stretching the side energy lines of the legs and the arms, and for anyone with sciatica, they might spend extra time working on the gluteus and IT band, all the way from the bottom to the outer calf.

The stomach can be an incredibly sensitive and personal area to have massaged, and requires a certain amount of trust between masseuse and receiver. If the receiver has any issues with slow digestion a clockwise stomach massage with gentle circular motions can help to stimulate bowel movements and digestive fire. If digestion is relatively normal, the massage can be performed counter-clockwise with pressure applied onto certain points of the stomach. Any kind of stomach massage helps the internal and digestive organs to work more efficiently, and can help to relieve stomach pain, gas, indigestion and bloating.

From here, the masseuse will move the receiver onto their stomach in a prone position and work the back of the body, before moving into a sitting position to work the shoulders, neck and head. Then, the masseuse will lie the receiver down, go to wash their hands (to cleanse from touching the feet and body) before massaging the face, to complete the massage.

Why is it considered beneficial for the elderly?

As we age, we experience a decrease in mobility, joint flexibility and suppleness, and range of motion that we perhaps had in younger years, which can create joint pain, aches, stiffness and the weakening of muscles. Through therapeutic Thai massage specifically for older patients, we can alleviate discomfort and facilitate pain relief, relaxation and an overall feeling of well-being. The healing power of a compassionate touch is incredibly valuable, and has the ability to help us feel more connected with others and with our own bodies. This can be something more difficult to find in ageing years, as we find ourselves increasingly out of touch with our physical bodies and feel that they are separate from our minds, where we are convinced we are still 25 years old. Massage induces a feeling of well-being and a boost of endorphins, minimising the likeliness of depression and creating a more optimistic outlook on life.

Do I have to lie down to receive a Thai Massage?

Generally, Thai Massage is performed on a thin, supportive mattress on the ground, or alternatively on a massage table. However, a good masseuse should be able to adapt to the receiver’s physical requirements. Massage can be given in the comfort of your home, long-term care facility, or hospital. Depending on the condition, the person receiving the massage can be in bed, seated upright in a chair or wheelchair, or lay on a floor mat.

For clients who are bed-bound, the practitioner will administer massage right on the bed. More focus will be spent on the hands, arms, legs and feet. This will also enhance relaxation, body in-home or on-location services so the patient doesn’t need to leave their home.

An overview of the benefits:

  • helps restore balance, emotional clarity, and promote relaxation and healing
  • helps to relieve joint and muscle pain and stiffness; and improves mobility
  • improves skin condition through better circulation and relieves itchiness
  • calms the mind and body, and promotes a more restful sleep
  • relieves old age depression, stress, anxiety and the feeling of physical isolation
  • helps maintain some muscle tone and flexibility, preventing muscle atrophy
  • releases endorphins which act as a natural painkiller in the bloodstream
  • offers human contact and a compassionate and healing touch
  • helps to relieve other ailments such as arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis, osteoporosis, and respiratory problems such as asthma and emphysema

To ensure that therapeutic massage can be received, it is important that the client consults a medical professional to gain approval. In some cases, Thai Massage is not recommended for the elderly in certain conditions.

Overall, Thai Massage can be incredibly beneficial for increasing vitality in the elderly, and can be a powerful treatment alongside medication and lifestyle changes for managing physical conditions, chronic pain, and creating an optimistic outlook of the years to come.

designed2enable specialise in stylish daily living products for the elderly and those needing a little extra help in life click HERE for more information

 

Author: Rosie Moreton

 

 

How To Put On Your Top & Derby Compression Socks

Medical socks for tired legs

Top & Derby Compression Socks

By the pure nature of the tight fit, compression socks can be tricky to put on but there is an easy and straight forward technique to make this process easy.

Start by putting your hand inside the sock and finding the heel pocket. Once you have found the heel, grab the material and slowly pull the sock inside-out, keeping hold of the heel material the whole time. The foot of the sock should now be on the inside of the sock and you are ready to put it on.

bare black2_S[2]

Top & Derby Compression Socks

Whilst in a seated position, rest your foot on the edge of the seat and put your foot inside the compression sock. Start to feed the inside-out compression sock over your foot until you reach the end of the foot  and your heel is in the heel pocket.

Go to the top cuff of the sock and slowly stretch it apart and pull it over the foot and pull it up over the leg until the sock is in place and the cuff is just below the knee. Then go back and smooth out any wrinkles.  Adjust the heel if necessary and you are ready to go!

Wearing compression socks can help improve circulation and reduce swelling of the ankles and feet due to health conditions like diabetes, paralysis, peripheral edema etc. Foot, leg and ankle swelling can also be caused by certain medication, pregnancy, air travel, obesity and sometimes it can just be from being on your feet all day, particularly in warm weather.  While swelling in the lower extremities usually isn’t cause for concern, it can sometimes be a sign of something more serious, in which case you should talk to your doctor.

The demonstration video is also available to watch here:

More information on Top & Derby compression socks can be found on our website designed2enable.co.uk 

Hugh Herr – Double Amputee & Bionics Inventor

Hugh Herr Amputee - Bionic Prosthetic Inventor

Hugg Herr; Bionic Prosthetic Inventor

Have you ever wondered whether something that is perceived as your shortcoming, something that stops you from living life in a “normal” way, could actually be seen as an opportunity to push past conventional boundaries?

Hugh Herr is doing just that. He has created bionic limbs that are more flexible, more versatile, and much stronger than normal biological limbs, and is challenging our understanding of disability as something that hinders us from doing the things we love. Through his creations he is managing to bridge the gap between disability and ability, and at the same time exploring human limitation and potential.

Herr had both legs amputated below the knee after tissue damage from frostbite in a mountain climbing accident.  He was very well known in climbing circles, and at 17 years old, he had scaled cliff faces that no adult had ever attempted before. As a teenage climbing phenomenon, he met fellow climber Jeff Batzer and together decided to scale Mount Washington in New Hampshire. As they set out, avalanche conditions set in, but they kept going in the snow, believing it mild enough to manage, enjoying themselves. The conditions got worse, visibility was poor, and they got higher and higher on the mountain and further north, meaning further away from civilisation. They realised they needed to turn around, but Herr fell through ice during a river crossing and lost body heat and precious energy. After three days on the mountain they were eventually rescued, but Herr’s legs were severely frostbitten and gangrene was threatening to creep into the rest of his body. Seven surgeries later and doctors were still unable to get blood flowing back into his feet. His legs were amputated just below the knees, and he was fitted with legs made from plaster of paris. He cried every day for two years, his main focus not so much walking again, but whether he could climb. All he wanted was to feel normal again.

Image: Heinz Award

Image: Heinz Award

A few months after his surgery, he was fitted with a pair of acrylic legs, and took himself back into the mountains. As he climbed he realised that the real parts of his body got colder and achier, while his artificial limbs had no muscle fatigue whatsoever. He could also move a lot more quickly, because the amputations had left him 14 pounds lighter. This was when he had the realisation that fake limbs could possibly outperform real ones. A life changing realisation and one that set him on the path to creating dynamic bionic limbs that moved and felt better than real ones.

He realised there was a gap in artificial limb technology for bionic limbs – data driven creations rather than artisan crafted. So he filled that gap.

hugh herr double amputee

image: Shaun G Henry for Forbes

How do his legs work? There are three interfaces – mechanical, dynamic, and electrical.

Mechanically, he discovered a way to attach the limbs to the body in a comfortable and durable way – a relief for anyone who wears an artificial limb and endures the pain where the artificial and biological limbs meet. Where the body is stiff, he made the synthetic skin soft, and vice versa. This was done through a combination of MRI scans, robotic data and experimenting with different synthetic materials.

Dynamically, it was necessary to understand what each muscle does, how they connect with each other, and how those muscles are controlled by the spine.

Electrically, he realised that to make the limbs feel real, they needed to be a real part of the body, connecting with other processes, most importantly, the nervous system. He modelled the artificial limb on the biological limb, and researched the spinal reflexes and connections between the limb and the brain. He even went a step further, realising that through motor channels we can sense how a person wants to move. He now wears synthetic limbs that move and FEEL like flesh and bone.

Over half the world’s population suffers from some kind of cognitive, emotional sensory and motor condition, and due to poor technology these conditions so often end up as some form of disability.

Herr believes every person should have the right to live life without disability. To be able to see a loved one even with impaired sight, to be able to live without severe depression, to walk or dance in the case of limb paralysis or amputation.

Herr is shifting our viewpoint on disability and amputation, from the belief that a person is broken, to the idea that our environment is disabled and inadequate. A broken body is not a broken person.

He is passionate about bringing this innovative technology to the people that need it.

For more information on Hugh Herr and his work, see his Ted Talk, “The New Bionics That Let Us Run, Climb and Dance”:

 

 

Product News: Rollz Flex Shopping Trolley / Rollator

Sturdy shopping trolley

Rollz Flex Shopper / Rollator

Shopping can be a fun but exhausting activity and for anyone that has mobility problems or tires easily, the Rollz Flex Shopping Trolley, which double as a rollator,  could be the perfect solution.

Danish manufacturer Rollz, who are specialists in the ergonomic design of innovative mobility products are known for their award winning Rollz Motion Rollator. They have now produced another gem of a product with the Rollz Flex which has a very modern design and is ideal for anyone who may need a walking stick or a little extra support but who is not quite ready for a traditional rollator.

Topro Rollz Flex Rollator Grey

Rollz Flex Shopper with Denim Grey Bag

The Rollz Flex could easily become your best shopping buddy. It is lightweight and folds easily into a compact form for stowing in the boot of your car or storing at home. The push bar handle is height adjustable and can be positioned upright, or half or fully tilted forwards. When it is tilted forwards it can be leant on for support, just like a rollator.  The integral seat is there for when you need a rest and the push bar handle doubles as a back support when it is tilted fully forwards, for added safety.

Flex shopping trolley with adjustable handle bar

Rollz Flex Shopper with adjustable push bar handle

Every aspect of safety has been considered in the design of the Rollz Flex and therefore innovative drum brakes are included to provide safe and controlled braking and parking.  The manoeuvrable front wheels allow for easy steering and a threshold device is included on rear wheels for easy curb mounting.

The integral shopping bag is waterproof and holds a large capacity for storing all your shopping and the inner lining of the bag is removable and washable.  The Flex frame is available in white with either a Bright Purple or Denim Grey shopping bag.

Video Demonstration:

We think that you will love this product, we certainly do!

You can find more information on the Rollz Flex Shopping Trolley / Rolllator here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Surf Therapy

Adapted Surfboard for disabiity

Image: Surfability

Surf’s Up!

An exciting new development in surf technology is making headway for wheelchair users to experience the waves first hand.

Cerebra Innovation Centre,  in partnership with Surfability UK and Tonic Surf Therapy, have begun designing bespoke surf boards for people with limited mobility and neurological difficulties, allowing wheelchair-bound adrenaline junkies to get out of their chairs and onto the water.

Kai Lewis is a thirteen year old boy from Port Talbot, who suffered a stroke at age one and consequently lives with cerebral palsy.  He helped to test out the new products recently out on the water at Llangennith Beach in West Wales. Onlookers watched as Kai surfed his first wave, with a little help from his tandem surfer, a trained surf instructor riding on the back of his board. The board is a pioneer surf product, with a supportive “bucket” seat and space on the back for an experienced surfer to steer it in the right direction. Kai had a very successful day out on the water, catching waves with a huge grin on his face and his mother looking on proudly.

Adapted surfboard

Image: Surfability

Surfability UK (surfing for disabled children) and Tonic Surf Therapy (working with surf and ocean therapy programmes in the UK and the USA) have teamed up with Cerebra Innovation Clinic to develop this product. Surfability UK was founded in 2013, as a response to increasing demand for inclusive surfing lessons that would allow people living with disabilities to experience the surf first hand. They design specific surf lessons and experiences for groups and individuals based on their needs, in a safe and supportive environment. Amongst their equipment are Tandem Surfboards, Surfing Helmets, Buoyancy Aids and Beach Access Wheelchairs. They also use innovative communication with IPad software to ensure clear communication and instruction between teacher and student.

They aren’t the first to make progress in making surf more accessible to wheelchair users, but they are the first to create individualised products for specific conditions.  Ross Head, CIC Product Design Manager, says that “since its inception, CIC has made a tremendous difference to the lives of many children with neurological conditions across the UK. The unique strategic vision for CIC means that we are able to respond to individual requests for help and can make small numbers of bespoke products that focus heavily on individual requirements and inclusion into society.”

Overall, the day was a great success, supported by top weather conditions and a supportive team by Kai’s side. His mother,  Leanne Lewis, expressed her pride, saying “hopefully it’s going to get more children out of their wheelchairs… The more you can get them out the better.” Most exciting is what these continuing innovations in surf and mobility technology represent for the future, for wheelchair users, and for surf lovers alike. If you’re a surfer, or you simply love the water, you’ll know the thrill of the wave, and the residual calm, and how the water becomes like a meditation when you immerse yourself in it. Everyone deserves to experience that feeling, and now they can, thanks to CIC, Surfability UK and Tonic Surf Therapy.

For more information on innovative surf technology and therapy, take a look at the following:
Surfability UK:  http://www.surfabilityukcic.org/
Cerebra: http://w3.cerebra.org.uk/
Tonic Surf Therapy: http://www.cynnalycardi.org.uk/

Author credit:  Rosie Moreton for designed2enable.co.uk

Product News: Treat-Eezi Pressure Sore Mattress Topper

 

Treat-Eezi Pressure Sore Mattress Overlay

Treat-Eezi Pressure Sore Mattress Overlay

Pressure ulcers or bed sores are an injury that breaks down the skin and underlying tissue. They are caused when an area of skin is placed under pressure and the circulation to that area is restricted.

People over the age of 70, are more likely to develop a pressure sore as they have restricted mobility and ageing skin. Those with type 2 diabetes, spinal injury and other health conditions are particularly vulnerable to pressure sores. Pressure ulcers can range in severity from patches of discoloured skin to open wounds that expose the underlying bone or muscle. Once they have developed, pressure sores are incredibly hard to treat and repair can take months.

Pressure ulcer mattress

Pressure ulcer mattress

Prevention of pressure sores is therefore the best approach and the new Treat-Eezi Mattress has been designed to be compact, portable and comfortable. Treat-Eezi is deceptively soft but provides the correct cushioning and pressure relieving support. The breathable fabric technology regulates the body’s temperature and wicks away moisture, reducing the problems of friction and chaffing caused by sweating.

The thousands of polyester fibres in the multiple layers of the Treat-Eezi pad combine to conform to the natural body contours in both supine and seated positions thereby offering pressure relief well below that of normal capillary blood flow hence skin breakdown and shearing, plus friction are simply diminished.

Treat-Eezi also doubles as a chair pad for additional protection whilst seated. We recommend that pad is folded and always used on a foam based chair.

Further information on Treat-Eezi Pressure Sore Mattress Topper can be found HERE

 

Top & Derby: The Design Interview

designed2enable has a few words with Matt and Ben of Canadian design company Top & Derby, the people behind our beautiful new Chatfield Canes and Compression Socks.

Trendy contemporary walking stick

Top & Derby Canes 

Ben: Matt and I met while working for the international furniture retailer, EQ3. I did store planning and design for the each of the company’s corporate stores and independent retail partners around the world. Matt worked as an independent product designer, and designed many of the company’s top selling upholstery and casegood items.

We saw there was a gap in the home healthcare market for well-designed products, and from this little spark, Top & Derby was born.

d2e: What inspired you to focus on healthcare products and on the Chatfield cane as your launch product?

Matt: Although we would have loved to design and launch a large portfolio of products, we decided to focus initially on one product in order to test the market. Since walking canes were once used as a fashion accessory, and they are currently the most frequently used mobility accessory, we decided to launch a cane as our first product.

Additionally, the Chatfield was designed to be a simple and beautiful product, crafted of premium materials. We wanted people to be excited by the cane that they use, since many people are embarrassed to use a cane. Essentially, we started with a product that we felt our customers would be proud to own.

Top & Derby 3 canes resize

d2e: Was there a particular person who inspired you to produce such a dandy cane?

Matt: We didn’t have one particular person in mind when we designed the Chatfield. We thought about every person who uses clinical looking home healthcare products and how we could enhance their lives; we didn’t think it was fair that there was limited choice in the products that they were using. Overall, our goal with Top & Derby has been to make an impact on the industry with unique, design-driven home healthcare products.

Medical socks for tired legs

Top & Derby Compression Socks

d2e: Why did you choose compression socks for your second product?

Ben: We decided to launch compression socks because they represent a meaningful product extension for the Top & Derby product range. Like canes, compression socks are also fashion accessories for people who use home healthcare products. We’ve been delighted with the reception to our decidedly different sock designs.

d2e: You launched your products with Kickstarter funding. Did you have an overwhelming response to the Kickstarter campaign? Can you give us any insight into the pros and cons of the crowdfunding process?

Ben: Kickstarter is a topic that we could write a book about; we’ve launched two crowdfunding campaigns and have become quite intimate with the process of it. We have been fortunate to receive funding through both of our campaigns, but we don’t take for granted the hard work that goes into planning a successful campaign.

In a nutshell, the pros of crowdfunding are twofold.

1) It gives people the opportunity to access capital, test the market with an idea, and generate pre-sales for a product before it goes into production.

2) Crowdfunding provides people the opportunity to gain exposure in the market – sometimes through press and other times through organic site traffic – which helps to generate awareness for both a product and company.

Often, the biggest pitfall for crowdfunders is underestimating the capital required to launch a project. Underestimating capital can compromise a person’s ability to be able to deliver on his or her promises further down the road. Fortunately, we have not encountered these issues. Prior to launching each of our campaigns, we have been quite diligent in fully understanding the strategy and economics of crowdfunding.

Compression flight socks

bare black2_S[2]

d2e: Can you share any information on the design process and how long it took to design the canes.

Matt: The design process for our canes, and for all of our products in development, is often quite long. Ben and I often jam on product concepts, then I start drawing rough sketches. Eventually these sketches are turned into renderings and we will build some rapid (rough) prototypes before finding factories that we might want to work with to produce our designs. Once we narrow down the factories that we want to work with, we get some pre-production prototypes built and refine them until we are happy for them to go into production.

d2e: What challenges/setbacks did you come up against in manufacturing the products – or did the whole process run very smoothly? 

Matt: The most challenging thing about manufacturing any type of product is finding high quality manufacturers that can deliver on the vision we have for a product. Since our products often combine multiple materials, it can be challenging to find one manufacturer with the capabilities to produce products that use many different materials and manufacturing processes.

d2e: How do you select the manufacturers that produce your products? Did they have to meet certain criteria?

Matt: We spend a great deal of time finding the high quality manufacturing partners. Once we design rough prototypes, the longest part of the development cycle is finding manufacturers that we want to work with.

d2e: Have you had any specific feedback from retailers/design institutes and the general public? Are the larger department stores buying into the idea?

Ben: The general public (who use home healthcare products) seem to really resonate with the T&D brand and what we are trying to achieve. Larger department stores are not as open to the idea, since they don’t believe that consumers want design-driven home healthcare products. However, we believe that it will only be a matter of time before the market demands it.

If you would like to know more about Top & Derby’s products, check out the Chatfield walking cane and compression socks at designed2enable.co.uk

 

 

Making Hearing Aids More Glamorous!

Bedazzled hearing aid

Hanna Agar / hannaagar.com / Via thelaughingphotographer.tumblr.com

There are currently over 11 million people in the UK with hearing loss, or one in six of the population. This looks to rise to 15.6 million by 2035, to one in five people. Over 70% of people over the age of 70 have some kind of hearing loss. Hearing aids generally tend to look awkward and bulky and clearly announce the fact that you have difficulty hearing. Very few people relish wearing one and will struggle on for as long as possible without. But it seems that we may not be that far away from hearing aids becoming the next new fashion accessory.

stylish hearing aids

Hanna Agar / hannaagar.com / Via thelaughingphotographer.tumblr.com

American artist Elena Langer was Inspired by her elegant grandmother who resisted wearing a hearing aid due to the stigma associated with them. Elena, who who runs the ethical project blog “What I Live By”  set about making hearing aids more glamorous and more like jewellery. She  teamed up with NYC photographer Hanna Agar, they created a dazzling series of shots in real world senarios. Elena modelled for the photo shoot, wearing her hand crafted pieces that looked more like an extravagant pair of earrings, dripping with diamonds, than a hearing aid.

modern hearing aids

Hanna Agar / hannaagar.com / Via thelaughingphotographer.tumblr.com

In certain environments, such as busy restaurants or large groups of people or with background noise, the current hearing aids are not always that effective. Using a more minimal approach, a new company called Soundhawk have developed a sleek new hearing device that utilises smartphone and sensor technology to overcome this problem. Soundhawk is not a hearing aid, but it was created by some of the world’s leading hearing experts. Soundhawk is designed for people who struggle to understand soft speech, have difficulty hearing conversation over distances, or have difficulty understanding speech in noisy environments.

Soundhawk hearing aid device

Phot: Soundhawk

Soundhawk works by increasing the strength of the sounds that you want to hear whilst de-emphasising background noise. The smart listening system includes the Scoop (the earpiece) and a Wireless Mic, which when placed near the sound source delivers clear sound to the Scoop – even in the noisiest of places like restaurants or a lively dinner table. The Wireless Mic has a range of up to 33 feet and can be placed on a table or clipped onto the clothing of the person you are talking to. A charging case is included with a USB that plugs into an outlet or computer to charge. The devices are unified by a simple mobile App. The reviews are generally good but for a few customers it seems as if Soundhawk was not always the solution. However, their customer service seemed quick to respond and refund.  Soundhawk is currently only available in the United States but we have been advised that international shipping is in the pipeline.

babelfisk glasses

Taking a slightly alternative approach, Babelfisk visual hearing aid is a concept device created by Danish industrial designer Mads Hindhede. The hearing aid is housed in a pair of glasses with built in speech recognition software and the speech is converted into text in the form of speech bubbles which display on the glasses.

Babelfisk speech-recognition-glasses

Babelfisk speech recognition glasses

The device has two built in microphones which also address the issue of where the sound is coming from, helping the wearer to adapt to a 3D environment that sound creates.

Although Bablefisk does not appear to have moved on from its concept stage, it still offers a vision for an intelligently designed approach to hearing loss.

 

 

 

 

OneLeg Gardening and Posture Stools

OneLeg garden stool

OneLeg stool for gardening

Danish inventor, Susanne Schmidt was inspired to create OneLeg after finding an old “collar button” wooden, one-legged stool in her attic which had previously been used by her ex-husband, a brick layer, for laying paving. The stool had a single wooden leg and flat top with a curved base to the foot.  Susanne took to using the stool in the garden to save her knees and back and after a while, felt sure that she could improve on the design to create a stool with a wider curved base that would prevent it digging into the ground.  She also wanted it to be self supporting, ergonomic, weather resistant, stable enough to allow a good working radius and suitable for use for all ages. With the help of a friend and a few prototypes later, OneLeg Low was created with the addition of the anti-slip foot and stool covers.

Oneleg kitchen stool

Oneleg stool is useful for jobs around the home

True to the simplicity and elegance of traditional Danish design, OneLeg stool alleviates the problems of aches and pains through kneeling and bending. OneLeg has a unique curved foot that allows the user to tilt and rotate around so that the stool simply follows the body’s movements. You will be amazed at the improvement in your core strength and concentration by using OneLeg.

OneLeg will save your knees and back whenever you have things to do at ground level. Rock and turn on the unique base; OneLeg will follow your movement, giving you a wide radius while strengthening your back and abdominal muscles. and your core strength. The curved base is gentle to the ground. It won’t sink down into grass or soil and can be used on both flat and sloped areas.

OneLeg Gardening stool 32-54

OneLeg Stool is available in four size options

OneLeg has also found a home indoors and can be used by the whole family. The freedom of movement offered by OneLeg is great for posture during work and play for a variety of uses. In addition to the OneLeg Stool Low, three new height options for OneLeg Stool Tall are also available allowing higher seating positions for desks or tables.

OneLeg has many uses around the home, whether it be cleaning out cupboards, grooming the dog or playing with the kids. The stools have also  proved to be popular in nurseries, schools and pediatric hospitals for the children, teachers and nursing staff. Whilst being fun to use, they are great for posture and it is never too early to instill good posture into your kids!

Oneleg childrens stool

OneLeg stool for children

The Roto moulded single piece plastic leg is completely weather proof in extremes of heat and moisture and is easy to clean. The silicon seat and foot covers provide extra comfort and grip, allowing an even greater range of movement and good posture. An anti-slip foot cover should always be fitted when using OneLeg indoors.

You can have fun mixing and matching the colour schemes of your OneLeg. The stools come in a wide range of colours, along with the colour co-ordinated anti- slip foot and seat covers. OneLeg also makes a great gift!

Testimonials from a professional Orthopedic  Surgeon, and Occupational Therapists on the benefits of OneLeg can be seen below:

Doctor Morten Kramhoeft
Specialist Doctor, Orthopedic Surgery, CFR Hospitaler A/S, Denmark:

“We have tested the new OneLeg stool and found it to be very suitable. On the curved foot you sit both active and ergonomically correct. It is easy to tilt and rotate the podium without twisting in the back, and it invites you to keep your back straight while working.
With the simple and nice design, that is easy to clean, it is suitable in our environment, where hygiene is of course important.

As a specialist in orthopedic surgery, I can highly recommend OneLeg to our patients.
It is important to sit dynamic and ergonomic. This applies to work at very low altitudes, avoiding twisting and strain in the back and knees when using the small OneLeg of 32 cm and the higher models for many of the everyday tasks at work table, dining table etc. But also in training and rehabilitation of both back, knees and hips. When sitting on OneLeg, it is possible to train the muscles in the mentioned areas without improper load.”

Physiotherapist Gitte Skov Frandsen, DK- Hillerod:

“OneLeg offers a flexibility that differs from ordinary stools and chairs. With the possibility to spin and turn on the stool, you can prevent twist of the back that could ultimately lead to overload of the back muscles.

OneLeg also gives you the possibility to strengthen your (stabilised) back and abdominal muscles. The stool offers a dynamic sitting posture, which makes is possible to change the working and sitting posture. This is very important for me as a physiotherapist.

OneLeg has many uses both inside and outside. Outside it is primarily used for gardening and inside there are a wide range of possibilities for both children and adults.

I could imagine using OneLeg for example for watching television. The sitting would be dynamic, which is healthier for the body instead of static sitting. The cardiovascular system improves as the body continuously moves.

OneLeg can easily be used by children as well as adults. I, myself, have children at home and they use it for playing, drawing, watching television etc. and they are happy with it. Children have a natural freedom and joy of movement that adults are missing. Intuitively they know what is good for them and we must try to instill this in adults too.”

Authorised Occupational Therapist Ingrid Hallas-Moller Frederiksberg, Denmark:

“I find the OneLeg stool suitable for children in day care and pre-school for daily gatherings and other meeting activities. The stool gives the child a dynamic sitting posture, which stimulates the child’s nervous system for more calmness in the body. Especially for children who are hyperactive, it is a blessing for them to be able to move around on the stool without disturbing others.

The occupational therapist’s work is to change the child’s surroundings and with the stool, it is the sensory perception that the child receives that corrects the behavior. I also use OneLeg in my therapeutic training of children with challenges such as motor control, balance and planning for example in conjunction with ball games. The dynamic sitting posture on the stool makes the child exercise their balance skills and corrects the body against gravity to maintain balance.

Adults can benefit from the OneLeg stool, when working with children. First, it is possible to communicate at eye level and secondly the adult will have their body’s dynamic balance exercised.

The stool has a nice design with vivid colours and can be use inside and outside, by children and adults.”

Anne Grethe Olsen, Ebeltoft School, Denmark:

“At the Ebeltoft School in Denmark we have two classes for young students with various challenges. The common denominator is that most children have difficulties sitting still and concentrating,  even just for a short while. Most of the students therefore enjoy their OneLeg ergonomic stools.

For instance, Tobias aged 7 needs to keep active to avoid going to sleep and to be able to concentrate on the lessons. When he sits on his OneLeg stool he enjoys to move to different positions without disturbing the others as he would have done with an ordinary chair.

Another student is Emil aged 9. He is very restless and moves around a lot but he appreciates being able to do this on his OneLeg stool despite of the small seat.

He thinks the stool is fantastic and it makes it easy to for him to find a new spot to sit in the class room. Even when he turns and rotates on OneLeg it does not slide out on him because of the silicone anti-slip foot cover.

Of course we have some students that do not like to sit on the stool. One of these children have a brain damage that reduces his sense of balance. He is afraid to fall off the one legged stool that rotates when moving his weight and therefore he prefers the traditional chair.

As an adult I also use the OneLeg stool. My task is to be close to the students in the class room and move quickly from one to the other. I need to sit next to the children and the OneLeg is light weight and easy to move around.”

Further information on the full range of OneLeg stools and covers can be found HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iris Apfel, Style Icon

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image credit: thetimes.co.uk

Iris Apfel first came onto our radar a few years ago when she was featured on Advanced Style Blog. At the grand age of 94, most people are slowing down in life but Iris is an incredible woman who has become a ‘geriatric starlet’, known for her iconic style and creative brilliance.

A former interior designer, Iris and her husband Carl Apfel; a textile merchant who died earlier this year, landed a contract consulting on the interiors for the White House and were well known within the New York design circles.

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Iris & her husband Carl. Image: Rex

Her career as an interior designer and textile creator took her around the world. Through her travels to the far corners of the world, she collected her eclectic mix of vintage and designer clothes and costume jewellery which was exhibited at the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute.  This exhibition was a turning point in her career. Apfel styled the show herself and through word of mouth became a new fashion sensation, more or less overnight.

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Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures

Iris is celebrated in countless style magazines covers and insists that her appeal is due to the glamour that is missing in life these days and the fact that people like her because she is different. She is a master at mixing something cheap with something chic and manages to create her own style. She engages with all sorts of people, of all ages, from all walks of life and shares with them her excitement about living.

Loved for her no-nonsense attitude, she is well known for her ‘Irisisms’ where she shares her pearls of wisdom and her style inspiration:

“Fashion you can buy, but style you possess”

“When you don’t dress like everyone else, you don’t have to think like everyone else”

“I don’t see anything wrong with a wrinkle. It’s kind of a badge of courage”

“There’s no how-to road map to style. It’s about self expression and above all, attitude”

This year has seen the launch of Iris, a documentary film about Apfel’s life. Iris is living proof that keeping active is the key to ageing gracefully.