writing aid and bike by openDot help disabled kids enjoy their childhood

writing aid and bike by openDot help disabled kids enjoy their childhood

the milan-based lab openDot is participating with the ‘unico – the other design’ project at the reciprocity. design liège 2018, the renown international triennial of design and social innovation. the third edition of the exhibition addresses the courageous theme of human, economic and social fragility and as a new culture of the project is an instrument of accessibility and social adaptability in everyday life. among the selected designers for the triennal, the fab lab openDot, which presents the ‘glifo’ writing aid and a bicycle tailored for children with severe motor disabilities. both projects help improve autonomy and promote rehabilitation and are an example of how design can bring about a significant transformation in terms of social awareness and ethical responsibility.

glifo is acustom-madee 3D printed writing aid



glifo is a custom-made 3d printed writing aid developed by openDot in collaboration with the designers luca toscano, sara monacchi and andrea pelino. it is light, washable and adjustable, and has a practical grip that alleviates the motor difficulties of children with complex neurological disorders, allowing them autonomy in writing and drawing. it was co-designed by makers, designers, kinesiology experts, therapists and the families of the children involved. created with parametric software through digital fabrication, it is affordable and accessible, and, compared to other devices on the market, reduces limb contraction, favoring rehabilitation.



‘la bici di lorenzo’ is a tailor-made project for a six-year-old child afflicted by neurological disorders. this is a 3-wheeled bicycle with shortened cranks, ergonomic seat, back support and adjustable handlebars. all elements have been adapted from standard components. the guiding system consists of a wheel hub, the structure is milled by phenolic birch panels. the 3d model is customized but can be quickly adapted to other children with different disabilities and is much less expensive than similar orthopedic support devices on the market.



unico – the other design is a brand created by openDot and the together to go foundation (TOG), an italian non-profit organization that has created a center of excellence for the rehabilitation of children with serious neurological diseases. unico is a collection of customized and personalized products that improve the quality of life of disabled children, increasing their autonomy and allowing their rehabilitation. each object is co-designed by openDot designers with TOG therapists and children’s families, based on their specific needs. the project takes advantage of the tools of digital manufacturing and open innovation, which allow the production of unique objects characterized by functionality, specificity, sustainability, and beauty.

the bike is tailor-made for lorenzo, a six-year-old child afflicted by neurological disorders



saddleUp! is another device developed by openDot together with TOG. it allows kids to maintain an upright position





the making process of saddleUp! by digital fabrication at openDot fab lab




designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: maria erman | designboom

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