Danish mobility manufacturer Etac R82 has introduced a new paediatric stander which has been in development for more than eight years and is designed to bridge the gap between static and dynamic therapy.
With targeted and adaptable support, the Meerkat helps children who require assistance standing, to accelerate their postural control and motor skills through measured instability, whilst optimising therapist intervention.
The R82 Meerkat is a fully adjustable, ergonomic stander that offers posterior and anterior support with the option to add a rocker under the base. This rocker provides a dynamic element for children so they can move forwards and backwards – challenging their balance and improving core stability.
This rocking action enhances development particularly in walking and standing. The rocker can be positioned to change a child’s centre of gravity hence a greater range of movement and development is achieved. The Meerkat employs controlled instability to facilitate a learning environment.
Instrumental to effectively challenging balance and postural control is correct body alignment, says the company. This is provided by the new R82 ratchet system which delivers tailor-made pelvic, trunk, knee and foot support. Individual ratchets similar to those integrated into ski boots, allow therapists to deliver precision adjustments and de-rotate the chest and pelvis if required.
The Meerkat encompasses linear scales on its central and lateral columns so adjustments can be measured and recorded in relation to therapy goals. Each support is easily detachable so a child can continue to be challenged as their movement and control improves. Support is moved down from the child’s axilla to their pelvis/hips as their postural control improvements. Children are then encouraged to move from the hips left and right whilst working on the sagittal movement plane facilitated through the rocker base.
The Meerkat aims to provide an effective solution requiring less manual intervention. Traditionally, dynamic therapy requires support from several therapists which is labour and time intensive. Through its controlled and measured support, the Meerkat facilitates single-handed dynamic programmes, hence staff resources are maximised and therapy time is saved.