The task for my group was to help a man with quadriplegic cerebral palsy become more able to open up his joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments in his arms.
Anyone with cerebral palsy at whatever severity is faced with some challenge. Cerebral palsy is an abnormal brain development that does not get better or worse over time. Lee, our client, companion, and collaborator has spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy, which means all four limbs are paralyzed. Due to his contracted muscles, this makes certain tasks and accessibility to doing hobbies hard for him to do on his own, whether it be playing Magic the Gathering or playing video games.
Our project is a textile to help with physical therapy and open up Lee's arms. Because physical therapy was very time consuming in the past and caused his shoulder pain from over stretching it, physical therapy was not entirely a priority. Creating this textile will allow Lee to become more mobile in his arms so that he can use them to move more. This shirt can be worn underneath clothes or outside as a shirt. We created this by planning and sketching out multiple prototypes. There are thin wood laser cut pieces with slots for the white elastic bands, and a few notches to make it adjustable. Having the flexibility and options for how open Lee would like his arms because it will be more comfortable to him. Creating more textiles and other shells that can help people with cerebral palsy will be very useful. The clothing will provide physical therapy as one is stationary, and/or can help with movements. It will especially help with anyone who has limited arm movement from cerebral palsy. In the future, hopefully more advanced textiles will be produced to help give more mobility to people with cerebral palsy.