Gait trainers provide many different support options to allow a child to move independently in his or her own environment.
Some gait trainers look like a walker, with a lot of support options that can gradually be taken away as a child gains balance, strength, and coordination. Other gait trainers look like a bicycle seat on wheels, with many different support pads and straps.
Benefits of gait trainers include:
- Giving a child independence to explore his or her environment and work on cognitive development
- Helping a child learn and strengthen normal walking patterns
- Social development by providing an opportunity for children to interact with their peers
- Promoting exercise to improve cardiac function
- Providing weight bearing through the legs to promote proper muscle and bone development
Specialized strollers are like regular children’s strollers, but provide more support options and larger weight limits.
Some specialized strollers allow a family easier transportation by its ability to collapse and fit in the car, and they are made durable enough to be able to be tied down for bus transportation.
Options on specialized strollers may include:
- Different type wheels depending on terrain
- Head support
- Trunk support
- Hip positioning
- Foot rests
- Ability to tilt in space
De-rotation straps are special straps to help a child whose legs turn inward to straighten out. It spirals around the leg to provide a line of pull the opposite direction. These straps try to adjust the legs to provide a more correct position while a child does activities, mainly in standing.