Hands Free Running Shoe Inspired by Teenager with Cerebral Palsy

4 February 2021

Our clients with Cerebral Palsy tell us that they are always looking out for new innovative products that open up new opportunities for independence or movement.

Matthew Walker took this one step further. Back in 2012, a then 16 year old Matthew wrote to Nike explaining that of all the challenges he had worked to overcome in his life, tying his shoes was one he had yet to conquer. He wrote that “Cerebral Palsy stiffens the muscles in the body. As a result…it is impossible to tie my shoes. My dream is to go to college…without having to worry about someone coming to tie my shoes everyday.”

In response, Nike developed their Flyease range, with the aim of designing and creating trainers that were easy to open and close, easy to put on and take off, and accommodating of different foot shapes “ the common goal of making shoes easier for all athletes.” 

Yesterday, they unveiled a totally hands free trainer that closes when the wearer presses their heal down. No doubt many people will benefit from this innovation. 

Part of our role as Clinical Negligence specialists is to speak to leading experts about small and big product developments that allow our clients with Cerebral Palsy or other brain injuries to live as limitlessly as possible. For us a claim isn’t a formulaic process, but about getting to know our clients really well and personalising every aspect our clients needs and desires.  


If you or a family member have been affected by the issues raised in this blog please contact one of our Medical Negligence & Personal Injury lawyers on 020 7814 1200, or email us at claims@kingsleynapley.co.uk.


About the author

Kirsty Allen is a Senior Associate in the Clinical Negligence and Personal Injury department.

Kirsty has a varied caseload of clinical negligence and personal injury matters. Her clinical negligence practice includes adult and child brain injury cases, as well as failure to diagnose cancer, negligence resulting in loss of sight, gynaecological and cauda equina claims. Kirsty also has experience of Inquests. Kirsty’s personal injury work focuses on serious and fatal claims. 

Kirsty recognises that for many clients, understanding what happened is as important as monetary compensation and Kirsty tailors her approach to her client’s needs. Kirsty’s clients have praised her hard work and caring approach.

Kirsty is passionate about increasing understanding between doctors and lawyers around common mistakes leading to a clinical negligence claims and she has worked closely with the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management for the last two years to achieve this.

After reading Law at the University of Sheffield, Kirsty completed the Legal Practice Course before qualifying in 2010. She joined Kingsley Napley in July 2012.


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We welcome views and opinions about the issues raised in this blog. Should you require specific advice in relation to personal circumstances, please use the form on the contact page.

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