Robotics

“Watching him take those first steps was the proudest moment of my life”

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“You’re not really aware of this space until you’re thrust into it,” Trexo Robotics CEO and co-founder, Manmeet Maggu says of learning about his nephew’s cerebral palsy diagnosis.

It’s a familiar story in the world of health tech development. Personal experience opens the eyes to a hidden challenge, revealing a gap in the market.

A life without walking can lead to many health complications, from digestive and sleep issues, to blood clots and lower bone density, as well as reduced kidney function and more. .

“After we learned that, we said, there has to be a better way. There had to be some sort of solution that would help my nephew to walk,” Manmeet says.

Manmeet Maggu

Working alongside children, families, and physiotherapist, Manmeet and co-founder and CTO Rahul Udasi began building a prototype walking-assistance device from their Toronto base.

With their first promising product ready, they packed it up and flew out to India to see Manmeet’s nephew.

Sadly, the prototype fell short of the mark.

“We made a few more changes while we were there. And then, finally, my nephew was able to take his first steps using the Trexo.”

The prototype was still limited. But their progress gave the duo confidence that they were on the right track.

A couple of iterations later, Manmeet watched his nephew walk in the park for the first time.

“Watching him take those first steps was the proudest moment of my life,” Manmeet says.

By the time they returned home, word had gotten out. Families and hospitals were eager to try the technology for themselves.

It was then, in 2019, that Manmeet and Rahul decided to launch Trexo Robotics with the aim to help parents reimagine their children’s future.

Now, hundreds of children all over North America are using the device daily both at home and in clinics. The Trexo Plus clinic device is now in clinics around the world.

Trexo users recently achieved a huge milestone. An incredible 20 million steps walked  – the equivalent of a walk around the world

Tailored to their individual needs, the Trexo is designed to support a child through their entire growth continuum.

Manmeet explains:

“We designed our system around the Rifton Dynamic Pacer. It’s the world’s most popular gait trainer for children.

“Robotic legs attach onto the walker and onto the child’s legs, powering the system.

“The whole device is controlled with a tablet interface and the software is uniquely set up for each child.

“If a child has a stronger left side and a weaker right side, the robot can provide more assistance on the right and less on the left.

“As the child gets stronger over time, the assistance of the motors can be reduced and the child takes on more of the work.”

Four sensors track how much the child is initiating and during which phases of walking.

Manmeet says:

“As a caregiver or physiotherapist, you can see not only how much assistance or resistance a child is giving but also in what part of the gait pattern, which is quite helpful.”

Users have reported how Trexo has helped improve head control and bowel function, reduce sleep disturbance, improve gait pattern and increase core strength, in addition to increased confidence and independence.

Walking with Trexo appears to offer psychological and social benefits, too.

Trexo is now working on a number of clinical studies to establish these observed benefits in objective papers.

Manmeet regularly receives messages from parents who had always dreamed of walking with their child. And now they can.

Other dreams are coming true for the children and parents.

One child was able to walk down the aisle in her Trexo as a flower girl. Many children walked across the stage in school graduation ceremonies.

One child completed a triathlon with his Trexo used for the walking portion.

One of the mums recently shared that her daughter walked to school in her Trexo to make a donation to a Food Bank and she did the Terry Fox Walk in her Trexo.

From camping to walks with friends to street lacrosse, we are seeing kids experience things they never have, before their Trexo.

Along with aiding this connection between family members, the Trexo is connecting families to each other and they are forming friendships and support networks.

Manmeet says:

“Two children in different families each passed one million steps. The incredible milestone was celebrated by the family and their peers.”

2022 is drawing to a close in an exciting way.

October produced the most sales the company has ever done in a month and collectively the kids took the most steps they ever have in any given month.

Manmeet hopes to see a whole new wave of families’ lives changed by the Trexo in 2023.

Trexo has recently partnered with Make-A-Wish to deliver a Wish to Walk to children in the U.S. and Canada.

The company is starting to see insurance reimbursement, with case approvals from Medicaid, BlueCross, BlueShield and other US partners.

Manmeet says:

“It makes sense for insurance companies to pay for a technology that has a child walking from a young age.

“Not only will it improve their quality of life, but it will also actually save insurance companies money in the long term.”

Learn more at trexorobotics.com

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