I first met Win Kelly Charles when she invited me onto her Butterflies of Wisdom Podcast, and my first physical introduction to her was this past October, when, with her permission, I attended one of her therapy sessions at the Snowmass Club.
Born with Cerebral Palsy, Win has defied the odds by becoming an author. Her memoir I, Win takes us through her life lived with “CP”. As a competitor in the Kona Iron Man Triathlon, CEO of her own jewelry design company, and motivational speaker, Win Charles truly is an inspiration to many.
A petite girl, the smallest to wear the ekoskeleton suit, Win entered the physical therapy room with the assistance of a walker, wearing white leggings with bold colors splashed all over them and a matching Majenta fleece, her long chestnut hair perfectly woven into a single braid.
Moving towards Debbie Weidemann, a Physical Therapist for Able Bionics USA and Bridging Bionics Foundation, Win announced that I was there to observe quietly and take notes for my blog.
Debbie helped Win to strap into the Galileo Tilt Table, a device brought in from Amanda Boxtel to increase tone in order to get patients flexible enough to put the EksoTM bionic exoskeleton suit on. The first person in the United States to own an EksoTM bionic exoskeleton suit manufactured by Ekso Bionics, Amanda has donated her exoskeleton to the Bridging Bionics Foundation for use in the Aspen Community to help others who are paralyzed walk. Amanda currently serves as Executive Director for Bridging Bionics Foundation, which aims to bridge human mobility with exoskeletons and bionic technology.
Helping individuals in their program with various neurological impairments such as; spinal injury, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s Disease and Cerebral Palsy, Bridging Bionics helps people to regain their health and wellness so that they can walk over ground with upright weight-bearing mobility, using the combo of technologies including whole body vibration, and the eksoskeleton for neurological recovery, and they are getting results.
[su_box title=”Bridging Bionics”]Bridging Bionics Foundation is a public charitable organization. Our mission is to provide funding, education, and advance the research and development for exoskeletons and bionic technology to augment human mobility and capability. We envision that exoskeletons and bionic technology become standard mobility options globally as we strive to improve the quality of people’s lives. The goal of our program named Able Bionics USA, is to provide ongoing access to cutting edge technology, which is typically cost prohibitive, for individuals with neurological mobility impairments to reduce secondary complications as a consequence of paralysis, serve as a preventative healthcare measure, and enhance neuro-recovery.[/su_box]
Getting to know Win K Charles has been inspirational and eye-opening, and what I have learned is that Win’s Cerebral Palsy may handicap her physically but her mind is very active and intelligent and she will stop at nothing to tell her personal journey with cerebral palsy, and her desire to help others who have CP.
When asked how she feels after therapy, Win said that she is able to walk straighter in her walker and her Cerebral Palsy is easier to handle.
Win’s next adventure is to return to school for journalism while she writes her second book. Listen to our podcast here.
She is looking for aid a few days a week.
The easiest place to connect with Win is on Facebook
Win’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aspenroseart
Win’s Author Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Authorwc/
Win’s podcast on disabilities: Butterfly wisdom on wheels on iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/butterfly-wisdom-on-wheels/id1097347182?mt=2
Wins podcast on business and solopreneurs: Win’s Women of Wisdom on iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/wins-women-of-wisdom/id1060801905?mt=2
[su_box title=”Amanda Boxtel”]About Amanda Amanda’s story is a universal message of hope. After more than two decades of paralysis and a journey across continents, her pursuit is one of spirit-mind-body transformation. While her spinal cord injury took away her ability to walk, it didn’t take away her ability to dream. Today she is turning her dreams into her reality one-baby-step at a time. On February 27th, 1992 a freak skiing accident rendered her a paraplegic. On that fateful day, at the age of 24, Amanda’s life took a dramatic turn and her dance on wheels began. It happened in a split second while downhill skiing – she somersaulted, an electric current ricocheted through her legs, and instantly she knew she was paralyzed. Since sustaining a permanent spinal cord injury, Amanda has become a strong advocate for people with disabilities and has been involved in community and outreach projects that aim to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities. Amanda presents from her bionic exoskeleton suit, walking across the stage and demonstrating to her audiences the power of bionic technology. She is a passionate and dynamic motivational speaker who captivates her audiences with her stories, weaves in the valuable lessons she has learned along the way, and warms their hearts with laughter and compassion. She focuses her energy to present fresh material in a polished style. She has been featured as a speaker at numerous conferences and venues including TED2011, TEDx San Antonio, TEDxDU, TEDxSF, The Aspen Ideas Festival, 20th Century Fox Studios, Aspen Brain Forum, and Singularity University’s European Summit. Amanda has appeared in magazines, news publications, and on major television networks globally such as CNN, CBS Sunday Morning, National Geographic Channel, PBS Nova, Al Jazeera America, Sky News UK, BBC World News Horizons, ITV Daybreak UK, Sat.1 Bayern Germany, RUV Iceland, ABC’s Australian Story, and 60 Minutes Australia. Amanda’s overall message is one of never giving up in pursuit of the best quality of life possible. From her life experiences, she has a greater sense of healing and that transformation occurs from within. She believes in the divine connectedness to all things and she aspires to help make the world a better place for future generations. Amanda currently serves as Executive Director for Bridging Bionics Foundation, which aims to bridge human mobility with exoskeletons and bionic technology. In her spare time she enjoys writing, painting and drawing. She lives near Aspen in Basalt, Colorado.[/su_box]