The Ocean Inspired This Man to Invent Something Potentially Life-Changing for Amputees
After Randy Lord lost one of his legs from the knee down in a work-related accident, he rose to the challenge of acclimating to the world as an amputee. He embraced using a prosthetic limb, found new ways to exercise and relearned everyday actions such as climbing stairs and driving. But there was one thing he couldn’t do: swim in the ocean. So, he set out to change that.
Because prosthetics and seawater don’t mix, Lord and his wife, Lori, worked to create a swim fin that amputees could wear comfortably in the water, Bangor Daily News reported. They developed a design that fits directly onto the amputated limb, calling it the “Amp Fin.” The Lords claim that single or double amputees can wear Amp Fins in the water all day with no side effects.
When the Lords took Amp Fins to amputee and prosthetist Cory LaPlante, he reported that he could immediately feel muscles working that he hadn’t used in years, suggesting that the fin could also be a valuable tool for physical therapy.
Lord presented Amp Fins on Sunday at a public trial run in at the University of Maine pool in Presque Isle, Maine. “Able-bodied swimmers will have to try and keep up,” he told the crowd, according to Bangor Daily News.
The Lords are currently testing both hard and soft Amp Fin prototypes with five people and hope to have the product ready to market by April 2015.
Watch Amp Fins in action in the video clip below.
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