ARLINGTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – A group of recently-graduated mechanical engineering students at UT Arlington unveiled their design and build of a fully-functional treadmill made specifically for athletes in wheelchairs.
Brendan Griffin, who led the team of students, said the idea came from wanting to help the university’s wheelchair basketball team, the Movin’ Mavs, with specialized training equipment.
“Be able to help some people out and give these athletes the ability to train the way other people are able to,” said Griffin.
The treadmill allows a user to load on to rollers and set different resistance levels to help build up their endurance and strength.
Fabian Romo, Movin’ Mavs captain, said one of the most challenging aspects of wheelchair basketball is getting the initial push to roll with strength and speed.
”The more power you have, the quicker you can beat someone else off that bat,” said Romo.
The engineers behind the project say they also hope the uses of the treadmill go well beyond the needs of the Movin’ Mavs.
“Therapy,” said Griffin. “Maybe there is a new user to a wheelchair and they could develop the proper motions needed.”
The team says the next step would be to take their product and make it available to the public.