Tread lightly to reduce rehab

Reporter Sally McGlew tests out the machine as Richard Blurton and Neil Drouet look on.
Reporter Sally McGlew tests out the machine as Richard Blurton and Neil Drouet look on.

A new anti-gravity treadmill at Kalamunda business Evolved Exercise Solutions, in Mead Street, offers many benefits, including neurological rehabilitation.

Owned by Richard Blurton and his physiotherapist business partner Neil Drouet, Evolved’s $50,000 machine enables athletes to exercise even with a leg injury, enabling them to return to their sport sooner than previously allowable.

Gravity is reduced to as little as 20 per cent of what one normally feels like on earth while using the treadmill, or close to what it is like to run in water.

Mr Drouet said it was the closest people on earth could get to the sensation of running on the moon.

‘There are only five of these treadmills in WA,’ he said.

‘The Fremantle Dockers have one, the West Coast Eagles have one and there are three privately owned, of which this is one.

‘Now anyone with a leg injury can exercise with little gravity and get their fitness back.’

Mr Blurton said his wife Barbara ” a long-distance masters runner ” was carrying a knee injury and investigated how she could get back to running earlier. While she discovered there were anti-gravity treadmills in Perth, they were not accessible to the public.

With their physiotherapist Mr Drouet, they decided to buy one from the US, where the treadmills have been developed.

‘It’s technology devised by NASA,’ Mr Drouet said.

Mr Drouet said the $70 hourly sessions would be eligible for rebate if clients had private health cover.

For Barbara, the machine allowed her to run an hour each day with her injury, without putting pressure on her knee.

Mr Blurton also has also been a keen runner for more than 40 years and has completed several marathons.

‘Masters Athletics WA will make good use of this because older runners tend to have more injuries,’ he said.