Like a lot of Aussies his age, Adrian Ware likes to get amongst it. “What matters most right now is being fully functional and living a fulfilling life. My lifestyle consists of keeping fit and days out with my family, camping and embarking on motorbike adventures.”
Adrian is a lover of technology. If it has gears and helps you get places faster, then he’s all in. “I like working on my motorbike, but until now, I've been using my passive prosthetic to do this. While it has assisted me in completing some maintenance tasks, it lacked the dexterity and ability to grip tools safely. Working on my bike with the TASKA Hand has improved my ability to do these tasks and given me the confidence to attempt more tasks.”
“The hand allows me to live life the way I want to, by not having my amputation be the limiting factor.”
Adrian has found his new hand is a great way to meet and chat with people. “I often get stopped and asked how the hand works. It has allowed me to engage with people with more confidence. Also, young kids like the hand. When I’ve walked past a family in the shops, I heard a kid turn to his mother in the usual QUIET VOICE! kids do and say: ‘Mum, look at that man's stormtrooper hand,’ I got a buzz out of that.”
Adrian’s primary reason for choosing TASKA was the robustness of the hand. “When I first picked up the hand, I could feel the build quality; it didn't feel flimsy or weak. The other reason was the functionality of the hand. The electrically opposable thumb and the grip button on the hand made it easier to change between grips.”
As a result of injuries sustained in an electrical accident in 1999, Adrian was fitted with a myoelectric hand. As he wanted to be a proficient user of his prosthetic, Adrian asked his OT not to show him one-handed techniques. “This hand did assist with daily tasks where gross motor movements were required, but the hand was more about grip strength and difficult to use when fine motor skills were required.”
Over the following decade, Adrian followed the advancements of prosthetic hands, and in 2009, he invested in a Bluetooth connected hand. “I was the first person in Australia to receive this (type of) hand.”
Being an avid early adopter, Adrian was able to assist developers with feedback on faults and issues. “While the (previous) hand was able to assist with some of my daily tasks, I never felt 100% confident.”
Adrian told us that, for him, the limb loss journey has come in various stages. “Grieving limb loss, trying to feel normal again, adapting and accepting. When you reach this acceptance stage, you shift your focus from how your prosthetic looks to others to how my prosthetic can express my individuality.”
In 2020, Adrian was fitted with a TASKA Hand. “My previous prosthetic always felt flimsy to the point that I would take it off. So, in the end, I would only really use it when I went out. Now, each day, I attempt new tasks that I would not have in the past like carry a couple of extra shopping bags from the car instead of just one light bag. Using the hand to do some gardening and bike maintenance.”
Many of Adrian’s interests, like working on his bike, need a great deal of fine motor work and the use of multiple grips. “Some tasks require you to have the ability to switch between grips like a normal hand. So having access to buttons to cycle through your favourite grips mid-task and not relying on the app would have to be my most liked feature.”
Then, there are the everyday activities. “Being able to use the hand in and around water greatly assists with cleaning hands and washing up duties. Then there’s switching between holding a cup and holding a knife using the buttons on the hand.”
As mentioned earlier, Adrian likes to get out and about and be amongst it. This is a man who, in 2017, circumnavigated Australia on a motorbike. Adrian is a lover of the great outdoors and is no stranger to a bit of roughhousing with his canine companions. “I was out walking my dogs to a nearby park so they could have a runaround. One of my dogs caught me off guard and knocked me over, and I fell, landing prosthetic first. I thought for sure the hand was going to be damaged and needed repair. With my previous hand, the finger would have jammed and not functioned and would require repair.”
“After picking myself up and checking the hand, there was not a scratch on it apart from a bit of dirt and grass and a bruised ego; everything functioned as normal.”
Finally, does Adrian have any tips for other TASKA users? “Enabling the toggle feature when the EMG grips are set can enable you to toggle between EMG grips and the home grip without having to use the buttons.”
And, how would he sum up his relationship with his new hand?
“I love technology and feel that the way the TASKA Hand looks and performs helps express my individuality.”
Always consult the Appropriate Use Guide before operating motor vehicles.
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