BRENTWOOD, 27 October, 2004 - Ford MAGIC ambassador Paul Moore - confined to a wheelchair for the last 24 years - hopes to give new hope to victims of paralysis by walking one mile at the Peterborough Embankment Athletics Track.

As a MAGIC ambassador, Paul talks to disabled people around the UK about MAGIC, Ford's free telephone information service for disabled and mature drivers. But Paul aims to go several steps further by proving he can cover a mile-long course on 30 October using a new piece of equipment from Poland.

The Dynamic Parapodium is a portable walking frame - intended for getting around the home or other indoor environments - but para-athlete Paul is determined to show he can go that extra mile in it.

Ford MAGIC (Mobility and General Information Centre) will be on hand to wish Paul success and provide motoring information to the public. Local Ford dealer TC Harrison is providing a display of the current Ford vehicle range. "The day promises to be a lot of fun for those who turn up to cheer for Paul; he is showing that losing the ability to walk needn't be the end of being mobile," said Andy Dougherty, manager of Ford mobility. "Our MAGIC representatives will also explain how disabled and mature drivers can get themselves into vehicles and on the road again," he added.

Dave Watling of the Mobility Aids Centre, Paul's employer, explained: "We'd love people to come and cheer Paul on and make a contribution at the same time. We're hoping hundreds will be able to join in to support Paul."

Paul, aged 41, hopes his brave attempt to walk a mile in the $2,500 device will raise awareness for The Spinal Injuries Association and The Back-Up Trust charities. Money collected will go towards equipment for Britain's 11 Spinal Injury Units, which help rebuild lives shattered by paralysis.

Editor's Notes

  1. Please contact the press office for photos of Paul and the Dynamic Parapodium or register on the Ford media site to download pictures direct: www.media.ford.com
  2. Paul's mile-long walk will start at 11am on October 30 th 2004 at the Peterborough Embankment Athletics Track (entrance off Bishops Road). He estimates it will take well over four hours to cover the distance.
  3. Paul Moore Paul was left paralysed from the chest down following a tragic motorcycle accident when he was just 17 and the Dynamic Parapodium has enabled him to enjoy the sensation of standing and moving around without a wheelchair for the first time in almost a quarter of a century. Paul also has an impressive physical and sporting achievements record already - representing his country as a weight-lifter and competing in athletics. He was selected by the UK to take part in the 1992 Barcelona Paralympics, and in 1996 broke the all-comers national record for Pentathlon, as well as competing in two world championships. Today Paul leads an extremely full and active life, driving all over the country in a specially adapted Ford Mondeo.

Parapodium has been used on patients with spinal injuries on the level of T1 to T8, Multiple Sclerosis patients and lower limb paresis (...). Incase of people with paraparesis, one of achievements is assuming of erect position with positive reactions concerning functions of digestive and urinary systems, as well as high mobility of the patient. Moreover, there was significant improvement in physical efficiency(...).

Reassuming, one has to admit that The Dynamic Parapodium has proved itself in rehabilitation hospital conditions, and continues to prove itself in private home conditions as a device enabling locomotion, remaining in vertical position, and as universal, multifunctional exercise machine. Use of the device is completely safe and is a source of patient's satisfaction...

Independent Public Health Care Facility REPTY
Gen. J. Zietek Rehabilitation Center of Upper Silesia in Tarnowskie Gory

The Dynamic Parapodium, through its positive therapeutic impact (scientific aspect), its life quality improvement, not only for patients, but also for families and therapists (ethical aspect) lowers the general health care costs (economic aspect). Present evaluations and analysis of positive medical and utilization opinions about the device, originating from numerous multi-profile health care centers and scientific-didactic facilities determine the necessity of DP in medicine.

"Medical Opinion regarding Dynamic Parapodium"
Medical University of Lodz, Physiotherapy Faculty
Department of Clinical Rehabilitation Basis Center for Biomechanics, Prosthetics, and Orthopedic Supply.

My name is Scott. I have a T12/L1 spinal cord injury. I am paralyzed from the waist down. I was injured in a car wreck 8 years ago. I am a user of the Ablegaitor "Walking Stander." I've been walking with this device for 2 years now. Doctors gave me no hope of walking again. With the Ablegaitor I can get up in the device myself and walk around my house and outside. Now I have something to look forward to when I get up. I can now go outside and shoot basketball standing up. When I am walking around I feel totally supported on my knees, hips and upper body. I know this device will not tip over. I feel comfortable while I walk. It's basically on a rocking motion side to side and lifting slightly on the arm bars to walk me forward. The device allows me to walk forwards, backwards and turn around. It's a total body workout. I have seen strength in my legs and trunk muscles. Sometimes when I go to the beach and I know there is somewhere flat to walk I take my device instead of my wheelchair. I can stand up from the seat of my car and get into the ablegaitor. So this allows me to go places and not have to be sitting down. I can walk around and look people into their eyes. It's a different feeling and its way better to be standing up. People are amazed at what they see when I am walking around. They have no idea I am even paralyzed. I can use my device for nearly 3 hours. Time does fly when you're having fun!