Faculty Advisor

Ault, Holly K.

Faculty Advisor

Hoffman, Allen H.


The goal of this project was to design and build a device for students at the Massachusetts Hospital School to use during their gait rehabilitation sessions in the pool. The main objective of the device is to safely provide stability and support to a specified group of students who utilize the buoyant forces of the water to assist their gait training. Other important objectives are to place the students in a correct ergonomic position and adjust to fit multiple sized users. The final design is constructed with 6061 T6 aluminum and consists of a 32.5" by 43" rectangular base with four pairs of wheels attached to the base for movement. The top portion of the device also consists of a rectangular frame with dimensions of 28" by 21". Two stainless steel retractable plungers are used to adjust the height. Stability is achieved by positioning the student so that he or she remains inside the upper rectangle, which is inside the "footprint" of the device at all times. The students also receive support through various accessories such as armrests, handlebars and straps. The stability and support provided by this device make it possible for a group of various sized students to practice walking in a swimming pool.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

January 2000


Biomedical Engineering


Mechanical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project


Restricted-WPI community only

Advisor Department

Mechanical Engineering