Faculty Advisor

Ault, Holly Keyes

Faculty Advisor

Hoffman, Allen H.


Each year, 800,000 people experience a stroke in the United States, and many develop hemiparesis, a weakness occurring on one side of the body. Exercise is proven to be helpful in recovery from stroke. The goal of this project was to develop a human-powered device that can aid in recovery from a stroke, while also serving a recreational purpose. This project resulted in the creation of a tricycle, which stores the pedaling energy of the strong leg with a spring in order to assist the weak leg in pedaling. Testing with force plates demonstrated that the force required to pedal the weak side with the highest spring constant was 49% lower than the baseline with no spring. The tricycle was a good proof of concept and with further modifications could be a viable tricycle in the future.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2016


Mechanical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Mechanical Engineering