Sioux FallsRapid City

Every child deserves to fit into this world!

Karlee's amazing TAOS system has helped her gain strength and new independence!

Karlee's amazing TAOS system has helped her gain strength and new independence!

I have to admit I was a bit skeptical initially when Michael Watt, orthotist at Children’s Care/Rehabilitation Medical Supply in Sioux Falls, suggested we try a TAOS (Therapeutic Ambulatory Orthotic System) walking system for my five-year-old daughter, Karlee. It’s a little odd-looking, and different from anything we’d ever seen. Karlee can move her legs, but is unable to support her weight, so she has gotten around by wheelchair, being carried, or using a walker. The walker was scary, because I never knew if she would fall or lose her balance, and it was very slow-going for her. We get outpatient therapy and orthotics services for Karlee at Children’s Care, and have always gotten such great support from the staff…they answer our questions and take the time to think outside of the box to help Karlee as much as possible. Michael suggested the TAOS, which is brand-new technology, to give Karlee more independence. It is a combination of a walker and braces, and it has worked SO well for her. For the first time in her life, Karlee can move safely around with her hands free– this is HUGE to her and to us. She can wave and give five to the other kids in gym time or recess, and she can play tag and throw the ball with her peers now. She can carry a snack or a toy. When we discovered that she can hold our hands when we walk together, it just melted my heart. I also love that she is upright, but yet she can roll right up to a table & sit.

She loves the independence, and I feel she has gotten stronger using the TAOS. Another key point is, she is walking straight, in the type of motion that we all walk in. In the walker, she was swinging back & forth, which I felt stressed her hip joints, which she had had surgery on last year.

I understand this may not be for anyone, but no equipment is for everyone & I believe every child deserves to find the right fit for them to fit into this world!

I want to thank Dr. Julie Johnson, Michael Watt, physical therapist Annette Vollan-Kerber, and the whole team at Children’s Care for introducing us to this new technology for our daughter.

-Melissa H. (Karlee’s, mom)

Comments (9)

  1. DeeDee wrote:

    Missy: I’m crying right now. Good job of writing the article. Karlee, you’re beautiful!! I love you! Grandma

    Posted 03 Jan 2011 at 8:17 am
  2. Mandy wrote:

    What a great story! Great job to Karlee and her family for working so hard and putting the time and effort in to make her so successful with this system!

    Posted 03 Jan 2011 at 4:06 pm
  3. John&MaryAnn wrote:

    Amazing! How wonderful this technology is available. Love and prayers to all from us at SeaBreeze

    Posted 03 Jan 2011 at 6:11 pm
  4. Emily Quinn wrote:

    You’re a wonderful mother, Missy. Karlee is so lucky to have you and her Dad. I am so very happy for her!

    Posted 05 Jan 2011 at 5:46 pm
  5. Abby wrote:

    Great message, Missy!! Karlee is an amazing little girl and the TAOS has definitely given her independence and freedom! She can run and walk like no other!

    Posted 05 Jan 2011 at 8:34 pm
  6. Duane Quinn wrote:

    Hon I want to thank the LORD for giving us a daughter like you we are so proud of you being the mother you are for crossing those bridges and climbing those mountains as you have we Love you so much and Karlee your are precious little angel and keep up the good work Nana an Papa love you so much..

    Posted 05 Jan 2011 at 10:21 pm
  7. Chang Neyer wrote:

    Outstandingly prepared post, if all people offered the same posts just like you, websites would have been a greater destination.

    Posted 18 Dec 2011 at 10:54 pm
  8. Christmas decorations wrote:

    Thats generally truly helpful article. Appreciation for all your enthusiasm to supply such helpful tips here.

    Posted 31 Dec 2011 at 8:55 am
  9. Lizelle van Rensburg wrote:

    Good morning!

    I have shared your story on our new facebook page:

    This really inspired me! Thank you for sharing.



    Posted 29 Nov 2012 at 11:49 pm

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