Product Design Engineering School of Design

Gabe Skeoch

Stretch Assistant

Stretch Assistant

Spasticity (uncontrolled muscle contractions) affects 65-78% of the spinal cord injury community, causing extreme discomfort. The most effective way to reduce spasms is to stretch the muscles regularly, however it is extremely difficult to do that without control of the legs.

The Stretch Assistant is a portable, mechanical leg brace that helps paraplegics safely and independently stretch their legs from their wheelchair. The use of a ratchet strap, pulling a short lever, provides the appropriate advantage to allow the user to lift their leg, and hold it at 14 various angles of extension. Straps connected to the foot plate allow the user to pull their foot towards them, and their upper body forwards, to intensify the stretch. The device would be available in a small, medium and large, each with a range of adjustability for maximum comfort and details that ensure safe and easy operation.



Putting the Brace on

Putting the Brace on

Fastening Thigh Strap

Fastening Lower Leg Straps

Extending the Leg using the Ratchet and Lever Handles

Pulling Foot Back to Intensify Stretch via Straps

Lowering the Leg via Release Clip and Lever Handles