Photo: An older couple, where she helps her husband out of bed.; Copyright: panthermedia.net/daviles

October 2018: Accessible living - with care requirements and without

02/10/2018

Whether they live in a rented flat or their own home, alone or in a shared flat - people want to be able to choose the way they live for themselves. But freedom of choice is not the same for everyone. You can find out what challenges, opportunities and promising projects there are in our Topic of the Month October: Accessible living - with and without care needs.
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Photo: Two young women see a blackboard in an exhibition, while one of them holds an audio guide in her hand; Copyright: Andi Weiland | Gesellschaftsbilder.de

September 2018: Under the sign of the times: Communication aids

03/09/2018

Today we communicate on many channels, (almost) around the clock. How our increasingly technology-dependent communication channels are developing, how an app helps people who need to find their language back after a stroke or how people benefit from digital and technical aids can be read in the Topic of the Month September.
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Photo: Trade fair visitor tries out a communication aid at an exhibitor of REHACARE 2017; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf / ctillmann

Communication aids: Market with steady growth prospects

03/09/2018

Whether we use words or body language – all of us communicate constantly and everywhere. While non-verbal communication essentially takes place automatically, spoken and written communication may sometimes prove more difficult. People with disabilities tend to frequently encounter barriers in this area – for instance, if nobody in their surroundings knows sign language.
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Photo: Woman with speech bubble in a retro pop-art style; Copyright: panthermedia.net/Vovanivan

Augmentative and Alternative Communication: The right enhancement to the way we communicate

03/09/2018

We all communicate everywhere and at (almost) any time. But this makes participation difficult for people who have other ways to communicate than most of us. Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) helps people who are unable to use normal spoken language to interact with their environment.
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Photo: Two young women see a blackboard in an exhibition, while one of them holds an audio guide in her hand; Copyright: Andi Weiland | Gesellschaftsbilder.de

Under the sign of the times: Communication aids

03/09/2018

Today we communicate on many channels, (almost) around the clock. How our increasingly technology-dependent communication channels are developing, how an app helps people who need to find their language back after a stroke or how people benefit from digital and technical aids can be read in the Topic of the Month September.
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Photo: A robot congratulates a patient for correctly sorting the colored beakers; Copyright: Shelly Levy-Tzedek

Robots as tools and partners in rehabilitation

27/08/2018

In future decades the need for effective strategies for medical rehabilitation will increase significantly. Socially assistive robots (SARs) are already being used in rehabilitation for this reason. A research team analyzes the improvements necessary to make SARs valuable and trustworthy assistants for medical therapies.
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Photo: A hand that assigns the correct image to a displayed term in the neolexon app on the tablet; Copyright: neolexon

From A to Z: How patients with Aphasia can recover speech and language thanks to neolexon

01/08/2018

Where would we be today without digital gadgets, first and foremost our smartphone? At this point, digitization has also conquered the healthcare industry. Yet when it comes to speech therapy, we are not really up to date in Germany. Meanwhile, digital services and products that might assist patients with Aphasia to effectively practice language at home could improve therapy success.
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Photo: Racing cyclist during the road time trial in Rio2016; Copyright: Andi Weiland | Gesellschaftsbilder.de

July 2018: Auxiliary means for professional sports

02/07/2018

When the athlete is no longer able to optimize anything during training, the focus shifts to the sports equipment. For para-athletes these are their auxiliary means. While athletics is often about prostheses and their possible advantages over athletes without prostheses, team sports focus on wheelchairs. In winter sports, on the other hand, it's usually about the right cutting.
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Photo: Handbike on the street. One leg of a athlete can be seen standing beside the bike; Copyright: Andi Weiland | Gesellschaftsbilder.de

Adaptive sports equipment runs the gamut from custom adaptation to unauthorized modification

02/07/2018

People with disabilities always have to be creative if they want to take part in aspects of life that many take for granted. And that’s no different when it comes to sports. Since then, lots of adaptive equipment to accommodate special disabilities and sports has been developed, while the choices and leisure sector options have likewise become more multifaceted.
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Photo: Racing cyclist during the road time trial in Rio2016; Copyright: Andi Weiland | Gesellschaftsbilder.de

Auxiliary means for professional sports

02/07/2018

When the athlete is no longer able to optimize anything during training, the focus shifts to the sports equipment. For para-athletes these are their auxiliary means. While athletics is often about prostheses and their possible advantages over athletes without prostheses, team sports focus on wheelchairs. In winter sports, on the other hand, it's usually about the right cutting.
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Photo: Wheelchair rugby between Brazil and Great Britain at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro; Copyright: Andi Weiland | Gesellschaftsbilder.de

Sports wheelchairs: Playing field, street and skatepark demand variety

02/07/2018

For many people with disabilities, the wheelchair is not just their everyday companion but increasingly also turns into sports equipment. What are some of the differences when this assistive device is used for recreational purposes versus in professional sports? And what makes them so unique? REHACARE.com has asked several athletes to find out.
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Photo: Anna Schaffelhuber with her monoski in front of a mountain panorama; Copyright: www.panzenberger.com

Adaptive equipment in winter sports: Customized and expensive, but extremely important for performance

02/07/2018

For winter sports enthusiasts, the wrong type of wax or the wrong grinding for the runners spells disaster - after all, one-hundredths of a second can make all the difference. Anna Schaffelhuber and Andrea Eskau, who make up two-quarters of Germany’s successful "A-Team" during the 2018 Paralympics, explain the importance of adaptive equipment and assistive technology for their performance.
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Photo: Electric hand prosthesis holds a raw egg with three fingers; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/ctillmann

June 2018: Prostheses: Auxiliary means with hand and foot

01/06/2018

Show what you have got – nowadays, that's increasingly the motto of people who wear prostheses, too. As a rule, it does not matter whether they wear skin-colored cosmetics over the prosthesis or whether they offer a view on the technical details. You can find out how individual the everyday aids can be and which extra features research currently makes possible, in our Topic of the Month June.
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Photo: Adult prosthesis with individually movable fingers; Copyright: Ansgar Pudenz

Prosthetic hands from VINCENT Systems: A lightweight featuring high-tech quality and a sense of touch

01/06/2018

The Karlsruhe-based VINCENT Systems Company develops prosthetic hands that raise the bar for prosthetics. This prosthetic device is light-weight, based on the anatomical features of a natural hand and offers a wide variety of functions as well as an artificial sense of touch.
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Photo: An orthopaedic technician fits a prosthesis; Copyright: panthermedia.net/belahoche

Prosthetics – Research offers new possibilities

01/06/2018

Whether it’s discreetly thanks to a skin-toned look or in an eye-catching way owing to technical details – the way people wear prosthetic devices today depends on their wishes and preferences. Due to modern manufacturing processes and ever higher design standards, for many, they have become a way to express a lifestyle they increasingly want to communicate.
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Photo: Electric hand prosthesis holds a raw egg with three fingers; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/ctillmann

Prostheses: Auxiliary means with hand and foot

01/06/2018

Show what you have got – nowadays, that's increasingly the motto of people who wear prostheses, too. As a rule, it does not matter whether they wear skin-colored cosmetics over the prosthesis or whether they offer a view on the technical details. You can find out how individual the everyday aids can be and which extra features research currently makes possible, in our Topic of the Month June.
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Photo: An elderly woman catches ichó. The ball starts to glow in red-orange colors.; Copyright: ichó systems - icho-systems.de

"ichó brings people with and without dementia together and provides a way to share stories, experiences, and impressions."

22/04/2018

Like the golden sphere in the fairy tale of the Frog King, ichó (Greek for echo) is meant to bring back lost motor skills and cognitive functions to people with dementia. The project of four former graduates of the Düsseldorf University of Applied Sciences aims to offer individual support through a person’s favorite music or fairy tale.
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Photo: Stefanie Trzecinski; Copyright: Johannes Franke

"At the TUECHTIG coworking space, people with and without disabilities are working together – and not just next to each other"

22/03/2018

Maximum flexibility to encourage ideas, effectively sharing office space: coworking spaces have become a part of many major cities. In 2017, Berlin featured about one hundred of them, but none of them were comprehensively accessible. That’s something Stefanie Trzecinski from KOPF, HAND + FUSS gGmbH wanted to change. That was the moment, the idea for "TUECHTIG – Raum für Inklusion" was born.
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Photo collage: 3D-printer with a printed hand and a small model wheelchair which was printed with 3D-printing; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/ctillmann

February 2018: Auxiliary means out of the 3D printer

01/02/2018

Prostheses, ortheses or gloves for rehabilitation - the market for auxiliary means is diverse. However, the needs of each person cannot always be met. Then individual solutions have to be found: for example, with the help of a technology that was developed back in the 1980s, but only really gained momentum in the last 15 years. This refers to 3D printing.
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Photo: Pen in a gripping device out of a 3D printer; Copyright: beta-web/Hofmann

Self-made 3D printed assistive devices to promote a self-determined life

01/02/2018

During the 3D printing process, three-dimensional objects made of different materials are created by adding the material layer by layer. This process is based on a three-dimensional computer model of the object. While 3D printers are at present primarily used in manufacturing and research, in recent years, more and more people with disabilities have also become interested in this technique.
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Photo collage: 3D-printer with a printed hand and a small model wheelchair which was printed with 3D-printing; Copyright: Messe Düsseldorf/ctillmann

Auxiliary means out of the 3D printer

01/02/2018

Prostheses, ortheses or gloves for rehabilitation - the market for auxiliary means is diverse. However, the needs of each person cannot always be met. Then individual solutions have to be found: for example, with the help of a technology that was developed back in the 1980s, but only really gained momentum in the last 15 years. This refers to 3D printing.
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Photo: Professor Ingo Bosse and his team; Copyright: Technische Universität Dortmund, Oliver Schaper

SELFMADE: Making your own 3D printed assistive devices

01/02/2018

The small finger attachment to hold book pages in place takes about an hour, the drinking cup with handles takes up to seven hours – 3D printing takes a little patience. However, in exchange, people with and without disabilities can develop and print customized small-scale assistive devices for everyday use at the SELFMADE MakerSpace in Dortmund, Germany.
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Photo: Several hand devices of e-NABLE on a table at REHACARE 2017; Copyright: beta-web/Hofmann

Colorful, personalized, playable: e-NABLE creates 3D printed hand devices

01/02/2018

Under the name e-NABLE Germany e.V., Lars Thalmann, Bernice Walter and Jan Hengst produce prosthetic hands for children and adolescents. What makes this so extraordinary: the young user gets to decide the look of the prosthesis because he/she can choose the color of the personalized model that comes from a 3D printer.
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Photo: A boy playing video games with his father; Copyright: panthermedia.net/vadymvdrobot

January 2018: Playfully accessible in rehabilitation and leisure time

03/01/2018

Virtually it doesn't really matter whether you cannot walk or whether you are a little more immobile due to age. That's why video games have meanwhile conquered both the rehabilitation industry and the leisure activities of people with disabilities. Find out how exergames put seniors in motion and how a quadriplegist plays current games in our Topic of the Month January.
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Photo: A boy playing video games with his father; Copyright: panthermedia.net/vadymvdrobot

Playfully accessible in rehabilitation and leisure time

03/01/2018

Virtually it doesn't really matter whether you cannot walk or whether you are a little more immobile due to age. That's why video games have meanwhile conquered both the rehabilitation industry and the leisure activities of people with disabilities. Find out how exergames put seniors in motion and how a quadriplegist plays current games in our Topic of the Month January.
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Photo: Dennis Winkens playing with his QuadStick; Copyright: private

Gaming tools: DIY community

03/01/2018

In this interview with REHACARE.com, Dennis Winkens explains how he discovered gaming, talks about things that can throw a monkey wrench into his game as a quadriplegic and reveals how he lobbies for increased accessibility in the video game industry.
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Photo: a braille line at a laptop; Copyright: Michel Arriens | www.michelarriens.de

How games conquer our world and range from mere entertainment to rehabilitation measures

03/01/2018

Video games have lost their corny and immature image a long time ago. And that’s a good thing because aside from being incredibly entertaining, they also have tremendous social potential. Meanwhile, the fields of rehabilitation and therapy also increasingly rely on the playfulness of young and old.
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Photo: Cinderella and Niels of HelpCamps; Copyright: HelpCamps

HelpCamps: "Making assistive technology faster, more affordable and personalized"

23/11/2017

In accordance with the slogan "Nothing about us without us", the HelpCamps project aims at developing and implementing concepts and ideas together. To make this a reality, people with disabilities, companies from the assistive technology, care and assistance sectors, as well as stakeholders in the so-called maker movement and researchers, are brought together to network during various events.
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Photo: Click-sonar coach Juan Ruiz while training with a kid; Copyright: Anderes Sehen e.V., www.anderes-sehen.de

"Long cane for children is a 'facilitator'– the chance to independently accomplish something"

17/08/2017

The long cane offers the possibility to be independent and effectively mobile as a person with visual impairment. Children in particular could get used to him in a playful way. The association "Anderes sehen e.V." has co-developed the children's long cane. REHACARE.com spoke to Ellen Schweizer, the founder of the association, about the fact that inclusion is not a burden, but can bring joy.
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Photo: Florian Adler; Copyright: Tim de Gruisbourne

"Inclusive communication design is both accessible and attractive"

15/06/2017

For many, recognizing and understanding characters is an important prerequisite to social participation. Inclusive communication design helps people with visual impairments to accomplish this. REHACARE.com spoke with designer and expert of the German Association for Blind and Visually Impaired People, Florian Adler. He has developed a digital guide to inclusive communication design.
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Photo: Sandra Glöckler; Copyright: Rolli auf Trab

"Horse riding is a sport people with and without impairments are able to experience together on equal footing"

20/04/2017

More self-confidence and independence – things you can learn from horse riding for example. People with disabilities can take this important step with "Rolli auf Trab" (English: Trotting with Wheelchairs). REHACARE.com spoke with Sandra Glöckler of "Rolli auf Trab" about the lust for life that horse riding inspires and the interaction and experiences with the animals.
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Photo: Marcus Rohrbach cuts fruits in kitchen, camera records scenes, computer screen in foreground

Will software automatically describe movie plots in the near future?

18/07/2016

In order to understand the plot of a movie an audio version is very helpful for visually impaired people. Authors watch the whole movies and describe what happens in each scene. But wouldn’t it be possible for a computer software to do this kind of work? Researchers work on developing a program which automatically generates movie descriptions and reads them out.
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Photo: Birgit Gebhardt

Blessing or curse? Using robots in the healthcare sector

21/06/2016

In the distant future? – But today already a reality: robot caregivers are designed to make the daily tasks of healthcare workers easier. Today these types of helpers are already being used in Japan. They lift people in need of care out of their beds, play cards with them or cuddle with dementia patients.
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Photo: Sigrid Arnade

"Ability4Refugees platform wants to provide auxiliary means for refugees with disabilities"

24/05/2016

Many people who had to leave their home country traveled in a wheelchair or used crutches. The stress of this escape was at times even more exhausting and taxing for some than for others. REHACARE.com spoke with Sigrid Arnade (ISL e.V.) and Eva-Maria and Andreas Mohn (Andreas Mohn Foundation) about the Ability4Refugees platform that aims to improve the availability of auxiliary means for refugees.
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Photo: Philipp Mahler with an avatar at MEDICA 2015

"The robot facilitates and promotes the connection between children"

15/12/2015

A robot that provides a link between hospital and classroom? The project Avatar Kids makes this possible: acutely ill children are able to actively participate in school activities with the help of a tablet computer. The teacher facilitates the communication. REHACARE.com spoke with Philipp Mahler of Avatar Kids about the opportunities this project provides.
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Photo: Nicole Seifert

"Safe mobility starts with the right choice and adaptation of the wheelchair"

23/07/2015

Whether it’s a wheelchair or a walker – for people with disabilities, it is crucial to control their own mobility in a competent and safe manner. Yet not everyone truly feels confident in every situation with these assistive devices. That’s why REHACARE.com spoke with Nicole Seifert about ways to foster more trust in yourself and others.
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