Luke Campey, aged 10, from Leicestershire who has Cerebral Palsy, became the fourth happy recipient of a gifted R82 Crocodile Walking Aid recently whilst playing Frame Football.
R82 UK, leading supplier of adaptive solutions for disabled children and young adults, is donating eight Crocodile Walking Aids during 2016 to young Frame Football players. Many participating children require crutches on a daily basis but a wheeled walking frame when they play. Amateur football coach, Richard Seedhouse, initially established the sport in Coventry and growing awareness and popularity has successfully seen further clubs opening throughout the UK. In supporting the activity, R82 hopes it can promote this fun and inclusive sport to encourage more children to become involved with local clubs.
Luke, who lives in Melton Mowbray with parents Emma and Andy, began playing Frame Football after spotting details on a Facebook page created by Richard Seedhouse. He has been a member at his club “Hucknall Rolls Royce” for just over a year and looks forward to his weekend training sessions.
Diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at the age of three, Luke requires assistance with mobility due to weakness in his legs and feet. Unable to walk unaided, he relies on the use of a frame, wheelchair or sticks. Luke’s mother, Emma, comments: “Luke sees a physiotherapist every three months and a specialist in Leicester twice a year. He has had Botox three times and is currently having his gait analysed as Luke has muscle loss to the outside of his feet which means they bend inwards. This is causing the splints Luke wears to rub and is affecting his walking pattern. We are currently looking into the Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) operation which would reduce muscle tightness and stiffness, and help Luke to feel more comfortable. In the meantime, Luke has a key helper at school who performs physio with him twice a day and he participates at Frame Football. This really helps his fitness levels which in turn improves Luke’s self-esteem and motivation.”
Luke was presented with the new Crocodile Walking Frame by Nicky Hogg, Etac R82’s Marketing Manager, at his Frame Football club training session. Available in three sizes, Luke has the larger frame which will cater for further growth spurts during his teenage years. As the walker can be placed behind him, Luke is able to move freely with optimal support and stability. Emma comments: “Unfortunately, Luke had become too tall for his previous NHS walker, by about six months, and despite the fact that he is always happy and optimistic about everything, we could see that he was finding it hard to use. He was therefore thrilled to be presented with the new Crocodile at the club session. We are so grateful to everyone who made this possible. Instantly it became apparent that Luke found it so much easier to move around.”
In fact, Luke proclaimed that the new Crocodile walker “looked really cool” and was eager to show his friends at the specialist unit he attends at Sherard Primary School in Melton Mowbray. For Emma, the biggest bonus by far is the Crocodile’s fitted seat as she explains: “The seat makes a huge difference! If Luke tires after ten minutes of walking, he can sit down for five and then we can continue. It means we can go out for longer and further, leaving Luke’s wheelchair at home. As Luke is currently finding it difficult to ride his trike because of problems with his hips, he now has an alternative way to stay mobile. He can accompany me on short dog walks and uses his new walker easily at Mencap which he attends twice a month, to meet friends and take part in day trips and park visits.”
Luke summarises: “I’m really pleased with my new Crocodile walker. It looks great and it’s the right size for me which means it’s brilliant for Frame Football. I love attending my club sessions and chatting to all my friends. I enjoy playing in defence mostly and I’ve noticed I can move much more quickly and easily now I have the new Crocodile”.