It can be discouraging to no longer be able to enjoy activities we once did as the result of disabilities. And, anyone is prone to losing self-confidence when excluded from physical experiences others are having. Why should anyone be left out of the fun?
Thankfully, for thousands of individuals, the Alinker walking bike has changed this narrative and has created opportunities for physical activity, social inclusion and emotional well-being for those with disabilities.
The Alinker was designed by Barbara Alink, a Dutch designer, architect and humanitarian. She aimed to design something for her aging mother who was resistant to walkers and scooters. Through two incredibly successful crowdfunding efforts, The Alinker is now available around the world, including right here in central Florida!
The Alinker is a non-motorized walking bike – without pedals – that allows for low-impact and strength-building physical exercise. When a person’s riding the bike, they are eye-level with companions riding traditional bikes, allowing users to feel included in the experience. The Alinker is designed to allow for independent operation without assistance, too, and is lightweight and foldable for easy transport.
Dorothy Lefford, VP of Clinical Services for Easterseals of Northeast Central Florida, recently acquired a sure-to-be-famous Alinker bike. She’s excited about seeing her clients’ reactions to the freedom and mobility offered by the walking bike.
“It’s totally great! It allows people who might need a walker with a seat to continue walking WITH a seat in a more socially acceptable manner," said Lefford. "You sit upright and at you’re at eye-level – and the greatest thing – it’s COOL! You can go to Disney World, you can sit and move along with your friends and family on this all day long. And, it’s great for endurance, too.”
Together with Alinker and inventors like Barbara Alink, we can challenge assumptions about people with disabilities, be more inclusive and help everyone reach their fullest potential.