When I first met the team at College Park Industries, a company that makes super high-tech prosthetic devices, I assumed that they make those springy feet you see on para-athletic runners in the news.
“No,” they told me. “We make the feet those runners put on after the race is over!”
They explained that their devices have to do much more than propel runner down a track. They need to fit comfortably and support users all day, whether they’re crossing the street, scrambling over boulders, or dancing with someone they love.
That’s harder to do than you might imagine. How old and how active is the user? What’s the nature of his or her amputation? Left foot, right, or both? What kind of support does the user need? How do you get the gait just right? There are countless variables when you try to make the perfect prosthetic for a diverse set of users.
College Park has a custom foot for them all. One product line alone, the Trustep foot, has more than 400,000 viable combinations so that the company can build just the right foot for each user.
How do they keep track of and test all those product variations? PTC Creo!
By the way, lest you think that comfort and versatility are just for the less athletic among us, you should meet Reggie Showers. He’s a motorcycle racer, snowboard instructor, rock climber, and College Park customer. There are also Paralympians Matt Brown (discus) and Maya Nakanishi (track and field).
Find out more about Showers, College Park, and how PTC Creo makes “400,000 viable combinations” possible and practical in our newest customer story: Thrill Seeker Overcomes Limits with College Park and PTC Creo.