YMCA Installs New Functional Electrical Stimulation Bike
Expands Access to Unique, Effective FES Therapy That Improves Fitness in Patients with Neurological Disease or Injuries
February 20, 2019
Wakefield, RI: The South County branch of the YMCA of Greater Providence today marked the installation of a new functional electrical stimulation (FES) bike, which uses pulses of electrical current to stimulate peripheral nerves evoking muscle contractions and patterned muscle activity to help those who suffer from neurological disease or injury.
“At the end of the day, this is what the YMCA is all about,” said Steven G. O’Donnell, CEO, YMCA of Greater Providence. “This is a place where people of all abilities can improve the quality of their lives and connect with the community.”
Tori Lynn Andreozzi, who sustained a devastating brain injury in 2003 when she was hit by a drunk driver at age 12, demonstrated the bike at the special event today. The FES bike enables muscles to work and perform activity even if they are weak or paralyzed.
“I want to thank the YMCA of Greater Providence for its work to make this therapy accessible,” said Cathy Andreozzi, Tori’s mother. “Life as you know it can change in a minute, as it did for Tori. Today, we work to make sure Tori has as many opportunities as possible. The ability to use the FES bike has made an incredible difference—providing the chance for her to move and to improve her muscles.”
Congressman Jim Langevin, who uses an FES bike to strengthen his muscles and cardiac core, applauded the Greater Providence YMCA’s work to make the therapy available to Rhode Islanders.
“It is great to see the YMCA continuing its rich tradition of inclusion and togetherness with the installation of this new FES bike,” said Congressman Jim Langevin at today’s event. “The Cranston YMCA was the first in the state to offer the use of an FES bike, and I am thrilled South County members will also now have access to this remarkable equipment.”
The purchase of the FES bike was made possible through donations from the YMCA of Greater Providence’s 2018 Dancing Under the Stars event and an unexpected $25,000 donation from Joe Nagle, President, and CEO, Delta Dental.
“When I saw Tori at the Dancing Under the Stars event, I was so touched by her spirit and her potential,” said Nagle. “She touched my heart and I knew that I wanted to help her and others who could benefit from an FES bike.”
“We’re here today because of people like Joe Nagle,” said O’Donnell at the Tuesday event. “Without hesitation, Joe stepped up—and his generosity will make a difference for so many of people.”
This is the fifth FES bike installed at a YMCA of Greater Providence branch. YMCA of Greater Providence members can use the bike free of charge.
Photo credit: Cathy and Tori Andreozzi