An innovative fitness trainer for wheelchair users is proving a hit around the world – and a number of universities are using it as part of their testing programmes.
The Invictus Active Trainer, a wheelchair treadmill, is the brainchild of Scott Smith and Paul Cooksey, both full-time wheelchair users following spinal injuries.
They are the founders of mobility equipment supplier Invictus Active, a company based in Four Ashes in South Staffordshire.
Paul, who had gained weight and knows the importance of exercise for wheelchair users, designed the Trainer as a “cardio machine” which also builds shoulder strength and muscles.
Paul said: “The Trainer was originally created following a road traffic accident which I suffered. I had put a lot of weight on during recovery and I created it as a means of losing weight.
“Going forward we would like to see it appear in a lot more gyms so that wheelchair users can turn up and be included with able people in a gym workout.”
Scott said: “The Trainer was developed in Paul’s garage and fast-forwarding 18 months we took it to the concept of a wheelchair treadmill enabling wheelchair users to get fit.
“It is lightweight and portable and in terms of fitness it connects to our App recording your speed, distance, heart rate and calories.”
The weight-adjustable treadmill, which consists of a ramp and four rollers underneath the wheelchair, is proven to burn calories and fine-tune users’ pushing technique.
The invention has sold to thousands across the world from Canada to New Zealand, while they are also stocked in many rehab centres, activity centres and gyms worldwide.
Invictus Active has won a Sir Stelios Award for Disabled Entrepreneurs and the Invictus Active Trainer has been featured in a Channel Four film.
The trainer is now available at the National College for People with Disabilities.
Three Trainers have also been set up at the YMCA Community & Activity Village, a landmark facility in Newark.
Invictus Active’s customers range from athletes to children and seniors.
The company also provides online wheelchair fitness sessions.
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