Smiles and applause filled the room as 3-year-old Niko Travis tested out his brand-new, custom AmTryke.
Travis proudly pedaled around the room full of local speech, physical and occupational therapists at the Enid AM Too AMBUCS’ Wheels in Motion event Thursday.
AmTrykes are adaptive tricycles and bicycles made for people with mobility issues. With the help of AMBUCS’ fundraising, people are able to receive AmTrykes for free. People of all ages who cannot ride a regular tricycle or bicycle are eligible to receive one. A therapist must measure and fit the AmTryke to the recipient’s physical specifications and needs in order to receive the best benefit from the AmTryke.
AMBUCS notes that its mission is to inspire people to conquer challenges related to mobility and independence through the help of volunteer chapters, in partnership with therapists. The Wheels in Motion event was held to expand membership, raise awareness of the club and expand opportunities for people to receive AmTrykes.
Last year, the local Enid AM Too AMBUCS chapter donated 13 bikes nationally and locally.
“We would like to donate more bikes in our community. We know there are people in the area that could benefit from the AmTrykes, we just need help finding those needs,” said one AMBUCS member.
“Through this outreach event, we want to show the therapists the benefits of AmTrykes and their role in the improving the quality of life in individuals, while providing an opportunity to learn and network,” said Valerie Trojan, AMBUCS member and local occupational therapist (OT).
Nationally, AMBUCS has distributed more than 40,000 AmTrykes since the first one was made over 30 years ago. AmTryke founder Sue Haywood, PT, and her colleague, Aimee Carter, PT, spoke at the Wheels in Motion event attended by around 40 area physical and occupational therapists about the history of AmTrykes and how the they can be adapted to serve their patients.
Part of Haywood’s and Carter’s presentation included demonstrating the usage and fitting of one of the AmTrykes. Niko received a bright red AmTryke complete with a flame-covered helmet. He beamed as his therapists, Dora Baker, PT, and Jade Capra, OT, accompanied him to try out his tricycle. Niko received an AmTryke that has hand and foot pedals, complete with rear steering for his parents to control the trike when needed.
Inquiries about donating to AMBUCS or receiving an AmTryke can be made to P.O. Box 5511, Enid, OK 73702 or on the Enid AM Too AMBUCS Facebook page.