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Prosthet Orthot Int. 2012 Sep;36(3):366-9. doi: 10.1177/0309364612453256.

Preparing our Paralympians: research and development at Ossur, UK. Interview by Sarah A. Curran.

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Wales Centre for Podiatric Studies, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff, UK.


In the last 25 years, the continuous evolution in the design of prostheses for individuals with transfemoral and transtibial amputations has been remarkable. Mirroring this development is the dependency and expectancy of the prosthesis technology by the athletes, coaches and other personnel involved in creating Paralympians of today and the future. Össur is recognised as a leader in designing innovative prosthetic products that have contributed worldwide to developing leading Paralympians. The opening section of this article presents an overview of the new Össur products for 2012. Discussion is also focussed on how Össur's high-function prosthetic products are integrated into an athlete's training regime. With involvement of the clinical team discussion is also expanded to recognise the important contribution coaching staff has on optimising performance of a Paralympian's training regime. The dialogue continues with a viewpoint on whether Oscar Pistorius, the face of Össur who wears Flex-Foot Cheetah blades, should participate in the Olympics and Paralympics. While the conclusion of this article may leave more questions than answers, the technology and products offered by Össur provide for a credible foundation and preparation for future challenges beyond the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

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