About five years ago, I hiked up to the top of Mt. Baden Powell. A four-mile hike up to 9,400 feet the trail features about 40 switchbacks. The night after the hike and while my husband was on travel, when I got up to use the bathroom, I couldn’t keep my balance. Leaning too far, my shoulder hit the wall. I feared that I could have slid down and hit my head on the tile floor.
Living in a rural area, I called an aging neighbor who had a walker. He offered it to me and invited me to pick it up. I begged him to bring it to me.
Within a half-hour, an older-model Lincoln pulled up. Inside was an eighty-something couple. They methodically exited the car and slowly walked to the back.
As they struggled to remove the walker from the trunk, I leaned against the fence feeling helpless. Once they got the walker out, they opened it and brought it to me. We all laughed at the irony of the situation.
I tell this story because it’s important to emphasize that even at a younger age, we should not be afraid to use mobility devices.
The image of two eighty-something people loaning their walker to a forty-something person makes people laugh!
NOVA, an innovative manufacturer of mobility, bathroom safety, and independent living products including designer canes, rolling walkers, transport chairs, wheelchairs, and mobility accessories, believes people should be able to live their active lives even if they need assistive devices.
In fact, NOVA is sponsoring a contest offering $6,000 for the winning story.
See below for information on how you can win!
Seeking Stories of Inspiration, Fun, and Style from Mobility Aid Users
Think life ends when someone needs the help of a walker? Think people in wheelchairs are old with nothing interesting to say? Think people using canes don’t care about style? Well, think again.
“The Zoom, Groove and Cruise Celebration was 100% inspired by real customers and real stories” says Sue Chen, CEO of NOVA, the company known for their stylish, functional and, yes, sexy, mobility aids. “We have clients that use their fire-engine red walkers to meet for a late night tryst at the hot tub or to traipse around Paris. Our clients are interesting, vibrant and very much alive! We wanted to create a forum to share their amazing life journeys–which we know are still going on–and help them along on their next adventure.”
Participants sign up at ZOOM GROOVE CRUISE, upload a picture or video along with the story of how they zoom, groove, and cruise with their NOVA product, and then get their friends, family and community to vote.
The person with the most votes wins $5000 and a mobility makeover, along with $1000 for the loved one, aid or salesperson that helped them share their story. The stories can be about anything– how you love, who you love, what you do, how you explore, reach your goals, live your dreams, help others, do the improbable or change the world.
“We want this to be a true celebration that allows everyone to see what we see–a world in which those facing mobility challenges are people with full, exciting lives, like 94-year old former professional dancer Anne, who still takes dance class with the help of her red walker or my friend Denise who doesn’t let ALS stop her from going to Antarctica to photograph the penguins,” says Chen. “I am personally inspired by the lives they have led and continue to lead. I want others to be, too.”
NOVA specializes in brightly colored and patterned walkers, canes and wheelchairs along with all the accessories needed to lead an active life. By designing equipment that is both stylish and functional, NOVA is changing the way people face mobility challenges every day. Chen also provides customers and retailers with “Mobility Makeover Solutions” finding the right products to fit her clients’ lifestyles, maximizing mobility, function and style. Chen believes that providing well-designed and visually appealing products will encourage people to use the mobility aids they need. NOVA products include red and purple walkers, floral and animal print bags and seat covers, plaid transport chairs, colorfully patterned canes, and more.
What happened on Mt. Baden Powell that day?
The back and forth motion of all those switchbacks may have imprinted in my brain causing my body to want to continue that motion as I tried to walk on level ground.
Fortunately, the symptoms wore off. I returned the walker. Now, our neighborhood has another funny story to tell.
The good news is, I’ve climbed that mountain several more times since then without effect.
Brenda Avadian, MA