USU Assistive Technology still at work helping the disabled

LOGAN – The Utah Assistive Technology Program (UATV) on the Utah State University campus is a statewide resource for information and technical services to help people with disabilities acquire and use assistive technology devices.

Last spring, 14-year old Wyatt Goodwin of Logan was riding his recumbent bike when his foot slipped off the pedal and under the bike, breaking his leg. Wyatt’s mother Heather said the assistive technology people went to work to correct the problem.

”The AT Lab was awesome,” Goodwin said. “They made the foot plate. They had to make a few adjustments because the physical therapist looked at it and recommended a few adjustments.

“They made a few changes here and there. Then they made the foot plate exactly to the specification that we wanted.”

Wyatt’s leg healed through the summer and his foot no longer slips off the pedal so he is back in circulation on his bike.

“Oh yeah, actually yesterday I went on a bike ride and it was amazing. These pedals have been a really big change in biking around. I feel a lot safer.”

UCAT charges only for the cost of materials in customization projects.

Heather Goodwin said the cost to get Wyatt safely back on his bike was $10.

“We traced the shoe onto a piece of paper,” said UATP employee Brandon Griffin. “Then we transferred the pattern of the shoe onto three-eighths inch plywood.”

They added a “lip” from thermal plastic, molded to fit around the heel portion of the pedal. They designed some Velcro straps after consulting with Wyatt’s physical therapist Shaun Dahle, making sure the straps fit around Wyatt’s foot and held it to the pedal for added security.

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