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Cerebral palsy boy gets help from gym owner
FACEBOOK may have helped a seven-year-old cerebral palsy sufferer on his quest to walk unaided.
Corey Cummings, of Coate Cottages, in Swindon, had a selective dorsal rhizotomy operation in May to help him walk unaided, but the procedure involves significant rehabilitation, which has taken a step forward in the past four weeks.
At the start of September Corey’s mother Kelly appealed in the Adver for personal trainers with experience of working with children to help her son. But those who came forward were deemed unsuitable for Corey.
Ultimately, it was the social network that put Luke Knapp, of CrossFit Swindon, into the limelight.
“My cousin did his new logo for the CrossFit gym and I liked the page on Facebook because of my family connection,” said Kelly, 36.
“He kept popping up and in the end I just thought I’d go and ask him. “Something was obviously meant to be because the logo kept coming up. Facebook might end up being instrumental to Corey’s future.”
Luke is the founder of both Switch On Fitness and the new CrossFit venture, which came to Swindon on September 23.
And his sister also suffers from cerebral palsy, which allows him to blend personal experience with his conditioning regime for Corey.
Luke, 25, said: “When we were younger her balance was affected; she would lose her balance very easily. She was always in and out of A&E.
“She was always working on her capabilities, which I hope to use as an approach with Corey.
“I will look at the things she’s done strength-wise to build up her own strength and balance.” Since linking up early last month Luke and Corey have met twice a week.
Kelly says Corey has begun making progress again after his improvements after the operation stalled.
“Luke spotted Corey’s weaknesses and needs at an early stage, which filled me with confidence,” she said.
“Corey’s comfortable, but it’s tiring. He isn’t saying ‘I can’t do this’ though. You can see Luke’s challenging him.
“I think we are looking at around a year from now (until Corey walks unaided).
“We will know more after our six-monthly review in December.
“The professionals will be able to see any stumbling blocks then.”