PushNationFest.org | Push Nation Festival: People getting together in the paralysis community
Push Nation Fest is an event designed to bring the paralysis community together in one place, focused on pushing each other to learn, dream and achieve more than ever before. Featuring groundbreaking technology, captivating entertainment and hands-on workshops.
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Indego Limb Exoskeleton Now is Controlled with an App


The Parker HMC Indego Exoskeleton allows patients with impaired mobility to walk and participate in gait training. The exoskeleton itself weighs 26 pounds and has no exposed cables or an upper body apparatus and requires no backpack mounted components.

Users wear the device around their waist and legs allowing them to stand and walk. It comes in interchangeable sizes and can accommodate people from 5’1″ to 6’3″ and can withstand up to 250 pounds

Connecting with Bluetooth

The exoskeleton connects to the users Indego app wirelessly via Bluetooth, which allows the patients to control the devices configuration and then enables session monitoring. The app provides access to settings related to standing, walking and sitting. The app also will allow the exoskeleton to be configured to more than one user at a time and will track session durations and session steps in real time. All sessions will have reviews and session logs can be exported.


The World’s Largest Wheelchair Painting


If you’ve been paying attention to the Abilities Expo in Los Angeles, that took place February 5th through the 7th, then you know how awesome the expo was. But one of the most exciting activities was that over 300 wheelchair users got to help create the world’s largest wheelchair painting.

Wheelchair users got to paint 2,300 square feet of paper and transform it into art over the three day expo. The painting process was made possible by Zot Artz, which is an organization that helps those with disabilities create art. The paint tools that were created helped the participants paint, stamp, print and creatively express themselves.

The hands-on experience “Garden of PossAbilites”, as it was called, helped to develop motor skills, social skills, emotional skills, concentration and self-esteem.

The masterpiece took three days to unfold and used over 50 gallons of paint in bright vibrant colors.


New Device Helps Get People with Paralysis Back on Their Feet


For the first time, scientists have tested a minimally-invasive brain machine interface that is designed to help control an exoskeleton with the power of thought. The device is the size of a paperclip and has been recently developed and tested at The Royal Melbourne Hospital in Melbourne, Australia.

How it Works

The device gets implanted into a blood vessel next to the brain and can read electrical signals from the brain’s control system. Because the device is implanted through a minimally-invasive brain surgery, it helps to avoid the need for a high risk open brain surgery.

The device helps to “[record] brain activity and [converts] the acquired signals into electrical commands, which in turn would lead to movement of the limbs through a mobility assist device like an exoskeleton. In essence this a bionic spinal cord,” explains Dr. Thomas Oxley, Principal Author and Neurologist at The Royal Melbourne Hospital.

The users will have to learn how to communicate with the machinery, but that will eventually become second nature.

What’s Next

The first human trials will begin in 2017 at The Royal Melbourne Hospital. The upcoming participants will be chosen from the Austin Health Victorian Spinal Cord Unit. Scientists are hoping to achieve direct brain control of an exoskeleton for up to three people with complete paralysis.

This is very exciting news for spinal cord injury survivors and we look forward to seeing what the future holds!



University of Melbourne. (2016, February 8). New device to get people with paralysis back on their feet: Scientists have tested the world’s first minimally-invasive brain-machine interface, designed to control an exoskeleton with the power of thought. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 9, 2016 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/02/160208124241.htm



Meet our Sponsors: Ability Magazine


We are excited to announce one of our fantastic sponsors for this year’s Push Nation Fest, Ability Magazine.  Ability Magazine is a leading magazine covering health, disability and human potential. They are an award winning publication that focuses on topics from Diabetes to Spinal Cord Injury. Not only do they focus on the latest in health but they also cover environmental protection, assistive technology, employment, sports, travel, universal design and mental health.

Many of the magazine’s talented writers include MDs, PhDs, JDs, best-selling authors, advocates and even U.S. Senators. Along with great writing talent, Ability cover interviews consisting of movie and television celebrities, sports figures, business leaders, Presidents, First Ladies and more.

If you’re currently looking to subscribe to Ability Magazine, you’re in luck! Right now they are giving free subscriptions out as compliments of Push Nation Fest. All you have to do is click on the following link enjoy.abilitymagazine.com/push and create a password to log in.

Be sure to stop by Ability Magazine’s booth while you’re hanging out at the Push Nation Fest this year. They’ll be able to give you some great insight on how to live up to your best potential and how you could subscribe to their magazine.

More information at:  www.abilitymagazine.com



Meet Our Sponsors: Ki Mobility


We are pleased to announce that Ki Mobility will be a sponsor at our Push Nation Fest 2016. Ki Mobility was founded in 2005 by Doug Munsey and Murry Slagerman. The company started out small but was determined to design high quality wheelchairs that would bring new life back into the standard folding wheelchair market. Ki Mobility now creates Folding, Rigid, Tilt and Youth wheelchairs.

Ki Mobility is dedicated to developing innovative seating and mobility products that provide optimal performance for the rider. They specialize in designing and manufacturing high quality, ultra-lightweight manual wheelchairs. Ki Mobility feels that what makes a wheelchair extraordinary for its rider is based on how well it fits the needs and ambitions of the person using it.

Be sure to make a trip over to the Ki Mobility booth while you are at this year’s Push Nation Fest. Here, you can ask them any questions about their wheelchairs and how they can help to create one that specifically fits you and your needs.

More information at:  www.kimobility.com

Cure Medical

Meet our Sponsors: Cure Medical

Cure Medical

For this year’s Push Nation Fest, we are proud to announce that Cure Medical will be one of our sponsors. Cure Medical is a medical products company committed to making a difference. They continuously contribute 10% of their net income to Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) and Central Nervous System (CNS) research. Every day, research donations are increasing with each new order that is placed. Cure Medical understands Spinal Cord Injury personally, so they are always working hard to design their products with your needs in mind.

Not only is Cure Medical continuously raising money for SCI and CNS, but they are also a great resource for information regarding Spinal Cord and Central Nervous System Injuries. They rely on a variety of partners and sources to learn more about SCI and neurological disorders; so if they don’t have the information for you, they certainly can get you the answer with a little help.

Stop by the Cure Medical booth at the Push Nation Fest 2016 to find out more information regarding Spinal Cord and Central Nervous System Injuries.

More information at:  www.curemedical.com



Meet Deborah Davis


We are excited to share that Deborah Davis from Push Living will be participating in the women’s panel and her own breakout session at Push Nation Fest 2016.

Deborah is a Speaker, Entrepreneur, Writer and Business Owner of Lifestyle Enterprise Push Living Inc. Push Living Inc. is a sponsor for this year’s Push Nation Fest and helps to inspire people and make the world “accessible to all”.

Deborah is a mother of two beautiful, wise and exceptionally bright young women and resides in South Florida. She is a former dancer, an accident survivor with a C 6-7 Spinal Cord Injury, and a college grad from University of Miami in 1991 with a background in Sales and Marketing and Non-Profit Development and Management.

She has now embarked on a new path that thrives on creating a market for Disability Inclusive Stock Images with the creation of PhotoAbility.net and an online publishing enterprise: PushLiving.com.

The mission is to create inclusion for people with disabilities through stock images. These images are used for advertising, marketing and editorial uses, providing accessible properties for travel, swap or purchase, publishing online magazines for improved health and well-being, providing information and opportunities for Accessible Travel, and to operate an online store with products that improve lives.

Deborah is most passionate about building a network of people with disabilities who are empowering, supporting and creating a more inclusive world.




Mindy Scheier of Runway of Dreams Slated to Deliver Keynote Address

We are pleased to share that Mindy Scheier, the founder of Runway of Dreams, will be delivering the keynote address during Push Nation Fest2016.

Mindy’s son was born with Rigid Spine Muscular Dystrophy causing clothing challenges due to muscle weakness. A fashion industry professional herself, Mindy decided to create Runway of Dreams – the first 501C3 non-profit organization to develop an adaptive version of existing apparel.

Runway of Dreams aims to be the authority on incorporating modifications to fashionable and affordable clothing for children and teens with physical disabilities, changing the landscape of fashion as being inclusive for everyone.  Runway of Dreams empowers children to embrace and celebrate their differences through an adaptive clothing line. The organization, collaborates with partners in the fashion industry to develop, modify and adapt existing mainstream lines.

In addition to her keynote address, Mindy will also be hosting a Runway of Dreams Fashion show. The show will feature the latest in fashionable and affordable adaptive clothing during the Runway of Dreams Fashion Show!

Be sure to check out our schedule page to learn when these and all of our other Push Nation Fest events are taking place.

Jennifer Adams

Push Nation Fest Welcomes Former Ms. Wheelchair America 2014 to the Women’s Panel

We are pleased to share that Jennifer Adams, former Ms. Wheelchair America 2014, will join the Push Nation Fest Women’s Panel alongside Tiffiny Carlson, Melinda Wheatley and Gaby Camargo.

Jennifer will add a powerful dynamic to the panel. She was born with partial limbs and throughout her life she has struggled with the limitations that come with her extra-ability. She does not consider her struggles a burden, but instead a gift, for she has had the privilege to learn that beyond our limitations is fulfilment and life’s purpose. Jennifer brings a message of overcoming life’s adversities through her personal story and life experience, that is relevant and inspiring to all people.

Be sure to stop by the Women’s Panel to gain insight from these women on topics including  careers, motherhood, marriage, sexuality, health, fitness, fashion beauty and so much more.


Push Nation Fest Welcomes Adaptive Yoga Specialist Barbara Newborn

Barbara Newborn was only 21 when she sustained a devastating stroke. A blocked blood vessel cut off oxygen to her brain and destroying cells that could never be replaced. The stroke resulted in complete paralysis of the right side of her body and loss of language skills. She once said: “I entered this strange world by myself; I couldn’t understand anybody or talk to anybody. I didn’t have my physical voice.”

As a bright, aspiring English educator; the accident took her teaching career down a different path and changed her life forever. Newborn had to begin learning simple tasks like holding a pencil or brushing her hair. She started using flash cards to rehabilitate her language skills.  Over the course of 10 years her life took an unexpected and inspirational turn: Newborn fell in love with the art of yoga.

With an emphasis on breathing and relaxation, while pushing your body to the limits – she realized the power it had to transform. She believed that yoga can help those with disabilities improve spirit, mind, and body just like it did for her. After taking several study trips to India, Barbara became a yoga instructor and developed programs based on her client’s circumstances. She helps make the impossible, possible – through movement, breathing, and meditation.

What her philosophy? That through yoga, you can learn to be well again, spiritually and mentally, “and that’s when you start to heal physically.”

Barbara now has two masters’ degrees in rehabilitation and speech. She’s a published writer who created, Return to Ithaca, a memoir to her inspirational recovery. Over the years, went to India many times to work individually with AG Mohan in Yoga Therapy.


She now owns two studios with her husband in South Tampa and Gulfport, Florida called Gardens of Yoga. Now, Push Nation Fest is excited to welcome Barbara Newborn and her wide array of vinyasas, sun salutations, and mediation exercises to the many vendors a part of the event.