Monday, May 25, 2015

Veteran-Founded Business Leimkuehler, Inc. Customizes Care, Offers Support

Memorial Day is a time when we stop to reflect on the sacrifice so many thousands upon thousands have made to fight for our country. Some of these brave soldiers suffered severe injury, including lost limbs, during wartime, and they return with a need for compassionate and thoughtful care to support them in returning to life back home. Whether you or a loved one lost a limb in wartime or through another injury or illness, Leimkuehler, Inc. offers the highest quality prosthetics and orthotics to all who need them. Jim Leimkuehler sat down with us to tell us a bit more about his family's business.

"Leimkuehler, Inc. was started by my grandfather, Paul Leimkuehler, in 1948," Jim said. "He came back from World War II as an amputee. He lost his leg above the knee in the Battle of the Bulge. ... Then he was at Walter Reed Medical Center and there were a lot of amputees at that time, so he helped out making his prosthesis, his artificial leg. When he got back to Cleveland, he bought an existing prosthetic business and started Leimkuehler, Inc. ... My father and uncles [later] bought the business, and we're still at the building in Cleveland where my grandfather moved [the company] in the late '60s. My brother and mother and father and I all work in the business and we have three offices: Cleveland, Lyndhurst and North Royalton."

Custom Prosthetics

The process for being fitted with prosthetics begins with the client and their personal doctor. The doctor will typically write a fairly open-ended prescription citing the location where a prosthetic device is needed, and then the Leimkuehler, Inc. certified specialists will custom create an appropriate device for the client. To do this, they first get to know the client's needs and goals.

"Everybody is different," Jim shared. "Everybody's unique, especially with an amputation. There [are] no two residual limbs that are the same. First of all, we look at their activity level before the amputation and their motivation and what they want to accomplish with the device. ... [Next] the practitioner will take a cast of their residual limb just like you'd put a fiberglass cast on a broken arm, but then they pull that off and ... pour it with plaster and use it as a model to then have an exact copy of the patient's residual limb." From there, the Leimkuehler, Inc. specialists craft a unique item for the client, taking into account logistics regarding balance and weight bearing to create a device that suits the client's needs.

Depending on how active the client used to be prior to the amputation, the team will "They select components based on talking with the patient, what they want this device to be capable of and what the patient was capable of before. And then they'll pick out the foot, the knee, [or whatever body part is needed] based on those requirements."

A Network of Support

Dealing with an amputation and adjusting to life with a prosthetic is an ongoing process. That's why the team at Leimkuehler, Inc. connects their customers with others who are navigating similar circumstances. It can help people, to have faith in their own process, to see what others have been able to accomplish with prosthetics. "If we have a patient that ... isn't sure what their potential [with the device] might be, we have kind of a peer network. We have some current patients and patients from the past that are willing to meet with a new patient or even a prospective patient. ... We facilitate that meeting. We say, 'Here's a phone number of somebody that is a current amputee that could speak with you about what your options and possibilities are in terms of the device and just everyday function.'"

"It's huge for a new amputee to speak with an existing amputee that can just reassure them that, if you're motivated enough, you'll be able to get right back to your life," Jim went on. "With some modifications, but you're able to do just about anything. And to that point, we have a supplier partner that has a basketball team, an all-amputee standup basketball team. They came out and played Baldwin Wallace just as a demonstration to show people what's possible. ... It's really neat to see these guys that are able to play standup basketball against college basketball players that are able bodied, and they were very competitive, so the sky's really the limit."

That said, the Leimkuehler, Inc. team also makes sure to match people appropriately with peers who have similar interests and/or activity levels. "We try to match up people that are going to be at a similar function level," said Jim, "because sometimes that can be overwhelming for somebody that's a new amputee to speak to a standup basketball player that's an amputee. We have a wide enough resource group base that we can match people up appropriately, and that does go a long way."

A Variety of Products and Resources

If you or a loved one has any needs in the realm of prosthetics or orthotics, Leimkuehler, Inc. has an amazing array of choices for those who are exploring their options. Consult with your doctor to determine what prescription would best suit your needs, then get in touch with local experts Leimkuehler, Inc. to create a lasting relationship with a company that truly cares about its customers.


Here at HandyPro, we make your well-being our priority. Our interview series goes hand-in-hand with that effort, and we hope you find it helpful! For more information on how we can help you make your home a home for life, visit us at or call me (Brian Pritchard) at 216-212-7531.

If you’d like to learn more about Leimkuehler, Inc., you can find them on the web at or reach them by phone at 216-651-7788.

To listen to the full audio of our conversation, please cick on the player below...

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Pain Management and Healing with WellFit Rehabilitation & Aquatics

WellFit Rehabilitation & Aquatics in Westlake, OH offers physical therapy to people of all ages who are experiencing discomfort from illness or injury, including those recovering from a surgery. Their onsite SwimEx Therapy Pool gives people the option of undergoing land and water therapy treatments. The facility also offers dry needling, which is similar to acupuncture but reaches the muscles on a deeper level to facilitate healing. We sat down with owner and physical therapist Jonathan Schauss to find out more about what they do and how they support our local community.

Finding the Support You Need

We've all been there, whether it's working out in the yard and pulling a muscle, rolling your ankle walking off a curb, or some other incident of injury that leaves you in pain. For some people, long-term pain is a problem. Perhaps you've been dealing with back or neck pain for more years than you can count, or an old injury never fully healed. Whatever the case, WellFit Rehabilitation & Aquatics welcomes people with acute or chronic pain to schedule an appointment to start feeling better. In fact, they recently started accepting walk-ins when possible!

The Benefits of the SwimEx Therapy Pool

Exercising in a water environment is a great way to get a good workout while minimizing strain or pressure on the joints. As Schauss shared, having a therapy pool at the WellFit facility was a natural choice: "It's a fantastic modality for a lot of people that have difficulty exercising on land. ... For example, if someone had a total hip replacement, a total knee replacement, a shoulder surgery, the pool is a great modality. [It's] easy to get into, easy to get out of. We have a lift chair if we need to use that for someone to get them into the water. ... The pool can be anywhere from no resistance, like a regular pool at the YMCA... but our therapy pool has a big turbine in it, which actually can generate a current, a resistive current, and the client is working against that resistance[.] We can control whether that's very mild or get it going so fast that Michael Phelps couldn't even keep up with the current!"

The WellFit staff can help to guide people in undergoing a healthy exercise regimen to heal strained or injured areas of the body using the SwimEx Therapy Pool. "There [are] different exercise stations within the pool--because it's specially designed just for physical therapy--for the patients to do leg exercises, arm exercises, back exercises, whether that's as simple as walking all the way up to aqua-jogging or actually running in the water on those variable speeds that we can set the pool at."

Dry Needling for Pain Relief


The dry needling treatment is effective for people with a variety of conditions, though it is unusual to find a physical therapist who specializes in the painful jaw condition known as TMJ (temporomandibular joint dysfunction). "We can use the dry needling pretty much anywhere that there's a muscle and a trigger point in the body. It works great for the neck and back muscles, leg muscles... I do specialize in treating TMJ patients also, which is kind of rare, and we can do the dry needling to help get the jaw muscles to relax to open up the jaw space so patients aren't experiencing as much pain in the TMJ joint, which is a very painful condition."

Preventative Maintenance

In addition to their pain management therapies, WellFit Rehabilitation & Aquatics also offers nutritional counseling and support with an ongoing exercise plan through their personal trainers. "The long-term question," said Jonathan, "is how can we keep the pain away and how can we empower the individual to maintain [their wellness]. We like to empower patients with not just the exercises but with lifestyle changes[.] ... You get good nutrition in [and then] the body has the building blocks for good DNA [and] healthy cell replication. You can [lead] a more active, fit lifestyle and be stronger."


Here at HandyPro, we make your well-being our priority. Our interview series goes hand-in-hand with that effort and we hope you find it helpful! For more information on how we can help make your home a home for life, visit us at or call me (Brian Pritchard) at 216-212-7531.

If you'd like to learn more about WellFit Rehabilitation & Aquatics, you can call 440-250-8895 to schedule an initial consultation, or visit them on the web at

To listen to our full conversation, please use the audio player below...

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Special Needs At Sea - How Cruise Planners Has Revolutionized Accessible Travel

People with special needs and those who are elderly are familiar with the challenges of finding suitably accommodating vehicles, homes, stores, and more as they navigate the world. Well, thanks to Helen Hebert, a global travel specialist operating out of our own Northeast Ohio branch of Cruise Planners, planning the perfect vacation no longer needs to be a burden.

Cruise Planners is the largest travel franchise in the world, and as you may have guessed by their name, they do indeed help people to plan cruises. That's not all they do, however, Helen said: "Cruise Planners is a full-service travel agency, so [in addition to cruises] we handle driving tours, land vacations, all-inclusive vacations, just about anything you could think you'd want to do on a vacation."

Special Needs At Sea

One of the great programs offered through Cruise Planners is called Special Needs At Sea. The idea is to make sure that, no matter your current level of mobility, you can enjoy a wonderful vacation. "I come from a family where we travel together," Helen shared. "Every year, we take some kind of a family vacation, and there are people in my family ... that have gotten older, some temporarily disabled, some permanently disabled, or even just the person like myself that as you get older you become what they call a slow walker. You're the one who slows down the people in the group. You tend to stay back because you don't want to slow the rest of the group down. There's no reason why slowing down means quitting the things you want to do, which includes travel and having a great enjoyment in life. So, Special Needs At Sea helps with that by providing ... any kind of equipment or materials that a person needs to make their travel experience more comfortable and more enjoyable."

The accommodations go far beyond just wheelchairs and scooters to include even medically necessary equipment like oxygen tanks and more. "Some people sleep in a recliner because of some sort of digestive issue, so they can place recliners at your destination or on your ship. And they deliver the equipment to the ship. It can be [oxygen] tanks, walkers, any type of chair mobility, whether it be transport, scooters, [or] power chairs. ... We can do different types of cushions for people that sleep slanted. I know some people sleep in a bed that has to be slanted, and they'll go in and adjust the bed. They can deliver adjustable beds, patient lifts, lifts for the beds--all that type of equipment that you would have at home but you're not going to pack that to bring it. They can deliver it to the ship, have it set up, and they will come and pick up everything once the ship docks back at the embarkation port."

Taking Your Vacation from Sea to Land

For those who wish to include land adventures in their vacation, Cruise Planners can also arrange for appropriate accommodations and transportation every step of the way. "There are several options for excursions [and] helping out in hotels," said Helen. "Unfortunately, where Europeans are ahead in many ways--explorers for alternative medicine and things like that--they are not at the same level as we are in the United States for making places accessible for those with special needs. So, the special needs group [that we provide] can assist with making a non-traditional place more accessible for one who needs the access." When exploring the Cruise Planners website and trip list, you can look for the trips that include a small handicapped symbol to easily see which are most accessible to those with special needs.

Going the Distance

Perhaps the best feature of all is the dedicated personal planning offered by Helen, Evan and their support team at Cruise Planners. When someone on the trip has a special need, they will make absolutely sure that those needs can be met at each leg of the trip so that everyone can relax and enjoy their vacation. "Being a special needs agent," said Helen, "I would plan with the traveler to make sure that their whole trip is mapped out where it would fit the need to be able to take full advantage of what they like to be doing. ... [We] pick an itinerary that works for them, that can make the most of their vacation."


Here at HandyPro, we make your well-being our priority. Our interview series goes hand-in-hand with that effort, and we hope you find it helpful! For more information on how we can help you make your home a home for life, visit us at or call me (Brian Pritchard) at 216-212-7531.

To get in touch with Helen Hebert at Cruise Planners and start mapping out your perfect vacation, you can call 440-522-7060 or visit her on the web at

To listen to our full conversation, please use the player below...


Monday, May 11, 2015

You Point To It... They Take It Away... Our Interview with Jerry Deliberato (JunkAway)...

From mementos and knickknacks to old lamps and pieces of furniture we no longer need or want, most of our homes have their fair share of clutter. For some, the clutter is relegated to a basement or attic. For others, the clutter begins to infringe upon the actual living space of the home, making it more challenging to navigate, particularly for the elderly. Whatever the situation that applies to you or someone you love, local Cleveland, Ohio company JunkAway is a great solution to get rid of those unwanted items in a clean and professional manner. We had the chance to sit down with JunkAway's Jerry Deliberato and find out more about how the company helps people downsize and declutter.

"I believe we transform people's lives by removing unwanted items, clutter, from their homes so that they can eliminate stress and gain valuable space from their home," said Jerry. "Our motto is you point to it, we remove it. ... It could be one item; it could be a full-house clean out where everything needs to be removed[.]"

There are many reasons that someone might need a junk removal service, some of which include:

  • Downsizing from a larger home to a retirement community, condo, or apartment
  • Addressing safety hazards for home navigation for those who wish to stay in their homes
  • Remodeling that results in unwanted house fixtures that need removal
  • Organization projects that result in paring down possessions

"Sometimes you've got to recognize that things [have] just got to go," Jerry said. "You've just had so much stuff over the years, you've collected it. We all do this, and we tend to drive it down to the basement. Then you realize you don't have any space in the basement, and the funny thing is most of the stuff that's in people's basement--I'd say more than 50% of it--they don't even know what's in the boxes! So, we try to make sure that the family members and the people living in the house have gone through their stuff, have gone through the drawers in the furniture they want us to move, have gone through and taken pictures and the different things that they want to pass on to the family[.] When we get there, when they call JunkAway, they've already done that and they now say, okay, here [are] some things that we want you to take out. We encourage people to make sure they do that because we don't want anything that should be going to a family member. We're very good about sharing that with our clients and their family to ensure that they've taken what they need, what they want. And the rest of it, we're going to help them take that away and ease the stress of dealing with all that clutter throughout the house."

The team also regularly collaborates with professional organizers to clear away unwanted items after a home organization project. Those items that don't fit into the newly organized space can easily be handled by JunkAway.

A Business That Gives Back

All profits from JunkAway's Cleveland branch go towards funding Koinonia Homes Inc., a nonprofit that serves the needs of adults with developmental disabilities. They are also a green company, recycling more than 70% of the items that they collect.


Here at HandyPro, we make your well-being our priority. Our interview series goes hand-in-hand with that effort, and we hope you find it helpful! For more information on how we can help you make your home a home for life, visit us at or call me (Brian Pritchard) at 216-212-7531.

If you’d like to learn more about JunkAway, you can find them on the web at or reach them by phone at 1-855-855-JUNK (5865).

 To listen to the full audio interview, please use the embedded player below...

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Longtime DJ Marries Music Therapy with Bingo

Kenny Gilder got his start as a DJ nearly 40 years ago in 1976 when the owner of a nightclub he frequented asked him to fill in for their regular guy. The rest, as they say, is history. Kenny loves the feeling of bringing joy to a crowd through music, and has been DJing ever since.

In the spring of last year amidst his other gigs at bars, restaurants, and clubs, Kenny received an interesting phone call. He was asked to call bingo numbers at a local senior center. He agreed to the gig, with one caveat: He wanted to be able to play music while calling out the bingo numbers. The center managers agreed, and while doing standard bingo calling to music, Kenny got the idea to take things even further and create a bingo game that was actually based on music. And so, Music Bingo Ohio was born, and the response was incredible. "The first time that I worked," said Kenny, "and saw the faces, the smiles... chair dancing... toe tapping, hand tapping to the music I knew I was onto something because they were really, really enjoying the music."

Music Therapy Meets Bingo

Among the arts, music is unique in the way that it accesses the deep recesses of our emotions and memories. That's what Kenny and his crew aim for when doing Music Bingo. "There's nobody that has any knowledge of the elder industry that does not realize that music therapy is one of the most successful therapies there is," Kenny said. "Even someone that is way beyond the ability to carry on conversations, they exist in a world of their own... if you play a song that connects with them, it's unbelievable to watch what happens. So, we're using that music therapy, which creates cognitive memory recall, which is what's important about music therapy because it takes them back to a time that they remember."

Kenny engages the audiences not only with the bingo game itself, but also by interacting with them around the music. Many will recognize the song but not know its name or who performs it, but often one or two in the group will and Kenny invites those people to share. He also keeps the energy of the room going by visiting people at their tables, dancing, and helping to make sure that everyone who plays comes away a winner.


Here at HandyPro, we make your well-being our priority. Our interview series goes hand-in-hand with that effort, and we hope you find it helpful! For more information on how we can help you make your home a home for life, visit us at or call me (Brian Pritchard) at 216-212-7531.

To reach Kenny Gilder and learn more about Music Bingo Ohio or his other DJ services, visit or call 440-341-3579.

To enjoy the full audio of our conversation, please click on the player below...