Well World Cup dreams may be over for the England Rugby squad but that does not mean the tournament is over, not a by a long shot. And it is not the final whistle for England supporter’s either, as from the 12th to the 16th of October, while the Rugby teams take a break to recoup for the knock-out stages, the Copper Box Arena will be hosting the BT World Wheelchair Rugby Challenge. Despondent England fans will be able to reinvigorate their enthusiasm as they watch Team GB take on Australia, Japan and France in Pool B of the Challenge, in the hope of facing the USA, Canada, New Zealand or South Africa on their way to victory in the final and a strong performance at last years Invictus Games means there are high hopes for Team GB.
Tonight the winner of the AXA PPP Health Tech & You awards is to be announced during an event at the Design Museum where the contending projects are on display. Among the candidates is the Bruise suit, an impact detection system for people with paraplegia developed by students at Imperial College London and the RCA as part of the Sports Innovation Challenge. Also in contention is a project by former SIC student and IDE graduate Anna Wojdecka. Lumo is a real time graphic reader for blind and visually impaired people which translates lines and colours into vibration and sound. Both of these projects are both technically interesting developments and provide a benefit to the user, but possibly neither is what you would think of immediately as being Health Tech.
An inspirational story from the BBC news pages today, follows a 10 year old boy playing Rugby for his local team, Chorley Panthers. Ben Seward was born with his right arm only partially formed, but through determination and the support of his friends and family he has rapidly become one of the most valued players on the Panthers’ under-11’s team.
It may be unusual for a Blog focused on assistive technology and sporting innovation but this is purely a story of strong will and determination and refusal to be limited by physical impairment.
Last month saw the inaugural World Cup Para Bobsleigh and Skeleton races held at Igls (Innsbruck, Austria) on January 23rd with the second round held in St Moritz on the 31st of January. Team GB have shown a strong presence with Corie Mapp (see photo) winning Gold medal in the Monobob at Igls and Matthew Richardson getting Silver medal in the Skeleton at Igls and St Moritz. There has been other interesting news in the world of Para sliding sports with Jon-Allan Butterworth and Heather Mills both competing in Channel 4’s Celebrity Winter Sports program The Jump. Jon-Allan, using prosthetic attachments adapted to fit the skeleton, clocked the fastest time out of all the male celebrities.
A recent success on Kickstarter where the concept raised over £125,000 (well over it’s original target of £50,000). SAM is a concept developed by design and engineering students at the Royal College of Art and Imperial College London. the kit consists of a set of small blocks containing sensors, switches, lights and motors, which communicate wirelessly and can be used to develop innovative new systems quickly and simply.
Since the Beijing Paralympic Games in 2008 there has been a notable increase in the representation of people with different forms of disability in the media. The London 2012 Games showed how far the movement to gain recognition has come in recent years, with huge viewing figures and sell out crowds at elite level disability sports events. It is however still important to improve peoples understanding of disabilities and one of the best ways of doing this is through the representation of people with disabilities. Sir Quentin Blake has written a story which focuses on the adventures of 5 children who happen to have disabilities.
Everyone at the Rio Tinto Sports Innovation Challenge is excited to see that a team of Innovation Design Engineering and Global Innovation Design students are International Runners-Up in this years Dyson Awards with their RTSIC project BRUISE.
This innovative concept uses technology developed by Fujifilm, for the printing and moulding industries, to demonstrate when a paraplegic athlete has received an impact which may have caused internal damage.
Finishing as International Runners-Up rounds-up an amazing year for the team who have demonstrated their project at a Bike Experience Day with Talan Skeels-Piggins. Tested it with the UK Armed Forces Wheelchair Basketball team in the run-up to the Invictus Games and have been interviewed by BBC News.
Last week saw the launch of the new School of Design Engineering are Imperial College London. the event was marked by an exhibition in the entrance to the Mechanical Engineering building. among the amazing projects on display included a handful of projects developed as part of the Rio Tinto Sports Innovation Challenge, including this year’s Ice Boat and Bruise projects.
It’s nearly here, after an intense organisation period, the inaugural Invictus Games is due to open on Wednesday the 10th of September with an opening ceremony at 18:30 on the South Lawn of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
As part of the BBC’s coverage of the Invictus Games last night BBC2 aired an hour long program called Countdown to the Invictus Games: Meet the Warriors. The program put the spotlight on a handful for injured servicemen who will be taking part in the Games as part of the UK Armed Forces team. Particular attention was focused on Capt. Dave Henson and Senior Aircraftman Mike Goody who have both played key parts in the development of RTSIC projects such as Murr-Ma.
Last Thursday/Friday you might have seen Dan and Ming from Team Bruise on BBC news demonstrating the Bruise suit with the UK Armed Forces Wheelchair Basketball team. As we get closer to the inaugural Invictus Games the Wheelchair Basketball team where in training at the Stoke Mandeville stadium in Buckinghamshire. Dan and Ming went along to present the suit and to see what the reaction was.