Experience the OGO Evolution 1. I had a chance to do just that first hand at the Abilities Expo at the LA. Convention Ctr. in late February 2018. For me, the experience was to see first hand just how much of a life changing Experience the OGO could make in my life and the lives of many others.
First, I was impressed with the turnout, not only from the people at the show, wanting to experience the OGO but, by the OGO Agents as well. They came from California, Florida and the Yukon. All were there to test ride the OGO, lend their support and gain knowledge about the experience to pass on to their customers. I was also especially impressed with the range of disabilities the OGO is able to handle. The mobility device uses Segway technology for balance and the active seat operated by the core muscles of the rider. It’s not only for those with immobility in their legs. Although, I did not witness this first hand, through talking to people who arrived before me, I was told of a gentlemen who was a quadriplegic, who gave an impressive display on the Ogo. Quickly picking up on the sensitivity of the device, and active seat motion, he was able to balance the Ogo with little movement, while stopping to talk. Then, he turned to go with ease. Proving to all who were watching, the Ogo has a wide range of use for many disabilities. The smiles that it brought to the faces of the people who told me the story, said it all.
During a brief lull in the crowd of people at the OGO booth, I had a chance to speak with the creator of the OGO, Kevin Halsall. What came across to me in speaking with Kevin was his genuine love for what he does. He told me a wonderful story in a few words, saying that aside from working in the shop, the shows are the only vacation he gets.
Kevin told me that he is dedicated to his work, but even more revealing, was that he loves to interact with people. After all, a convention show is hardly an easy job, believe me. He loves listening, and you can see it in his face. He quickly picks up on the needs of others and stores the information for future abilities of the OGO. This way he plans and anticipates on the intricacies of how to keep improving his invention. He is great fun to speak with and I am privileged to call him a friend. I feel we have much in common in terms of improving the human condition.
I did find an answer to my reason for testing the OGO. One of the habits you get into while using a wheelchair is that your attention and concentration is focused on the ground, looking for obstacles to avoid, such as pebbles and even cracks in the sidewalk which your wheelchair might have trouble crossing. Not so, as it goes with this mobility device. While I was riding the OGO, that’s what I was doing, looking at the ground out of habit without thinking. Kevin noticed this, and said, ‘Larry, look up at me.’ As soon as, I looked up he started to walk in a semi circle. It was then I realized I was keeping a constant distance between us, while looking at him and not at the ground. That was my life changing moment. Skills that I had used when I was walking came back, suddenly! Skills I had not used for many years returned. It was a wonderful experience. At that moment it was all I could do, to just smile, and make a mental note.
It was not until I had a chance to reflect on the experience that it brought me to tears. The thought that such a small thing could have so much power to change my view of mobility in my life. It put me back in sync with simple walking skills I had lost.
If I had to make a description and compare my OGO experience to something, I would have to say it’s like playing pool. All of the mathematics of angles and speed are done on a subconscious level, but you don’t notice it because you’re having to much fun enjoying the game. With the OGO, the fact that you are in constant balance and using your (mental) walking skills to navigate, is so very natural you don’t think about it. You’re having to much fun enjoying the ride.
I now understand the reason the OGO team picked the phrase ‘Grab Life by the Wheels.’ Riding this most incredible mobility innovation is a natural process that puts you in touch with all of the walking skills you know and love. In fact, I feel in balance and at harmony with life. With the OGO… The horizon is much less farther away and makes life’s challenges and adventures, much more accessible.
Written By: Larry Hollenbeck
Universal Digest Contributing Author and Graphics Expert
Universal Digest is most humbled to have in league such caring and talented contributing authors. It goes without saying that Larry Hollenbeck has provided some of the most beautiful graphics for this website and for all to enjoy. Thank you, Larry and all, as we move forward as a truly blessed team in 2018 and beyond.