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Birthplace Of The Paralympic Movement Is First To Trial New Gym Kit For Wheelchair Users

Innerva Stoke Man Stad Access Range landscape

Stoke Mandeville Stadium, the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement and the National Centre for Disability Sport, has become the first venue in the UK to trial Innerva’s new product for wheelchair users.

Developed in conjunction with Manchester Metropolitan University’s Department of Sport and Exercise Science, the Rotary Torso from Innerva’s new Access Range is specifically designed to address the issues caused by prolonged wheelchair use but can be used by all gym members.

The power-assisted equipment assists users to rotate the upper body and shoulders to exercise muscles weakened by repetitive wheelchair propulsion. It also develops core muscle strength to help improve balance when sitting in a wheelchair.

The power-assisted element of the Rotary Torso means the equipment is ideal for those new to exercise or returning to fitness after injury or illness. The machine supports users to undertake the exercise movements, so they can gradually ease into activity at their own pace. Various settings are available so users can progress as their fitness and strength improve. 

Stoke Mandeville Stadium is operated by More Community Leisure Trust in partnership with Serco Leisure on behalf of WheelPower, the national charity for wheelchair sports.

Guy Baber, Contract Manager for the site, said: “As the birthplace of the Paralympic Movement, there can be no more fitting location for a piece of equipment like this than Stoke Mandeville Stadium.

We have nothing like the Rotary Torso on the gym floor, so it’s great to be able to offer additional exercise options to accommodate the needs of all our members as part of this extended trial.”

Feedback from Stoke Mandeville gym members will be used by Innerva to improve the functionality of the equipment.

Speaking after trying the Rotary Torso for the first time, Chris Rattenbury, ambassador for WheelPower, said: “This is such a great idea.

It seems great for core work, especially if that’s something you want to concentrate on. It has been really easy to use and manoeuvre into for wheelchair user like me. This will really benefit people especially if they’re in a wheelchair.”

Jon Hymus, Commercial Director at Innerva added: ‘We are delighted to install the very first Access Range Rotary Torso at the prestigious Stoke Mandeville stadium, original home of the Paralympics.

We hope the machine builds on the fantastic equipment at the centre and offers something new and unique to all users. We look forward to receiving feedback and hearing all about the benefits it provides.”For more information about the access range, visit