How Bionic Gloves Support a Professional Pianist to Play Again

This excellent article ‘How the Maestro Got His Hands Back‘ explain how world-renowned pianist João Carlos Martins got back the ability to play thanks to special gloves.

He was a prodigy and celebrated as a great pianist until he could not use his hands properly any more. He reinvented himself as a conductor at that stage. But still expecting to play piano, an admirer found a way by getting people to build special gloves for him.

Then along came these bionic gloves, created by an industrial designer named Ubiratan Bizarro Costa, who became familiar with Martins’s problems after he saw the maestro on a Brazilian television show in 2019. There is nothing high-tech about the gloves Costa invented, which is how he prefers it. […] The gloves are both deceptively complicated looking and incredibly precise. The hand slips into a neoprene sleeve outfitted with a 3D-printed frame and stainless steel bars on the fingers. Costa, a fan of Formula One racing, was inspired by the cars’ rear suspension mechanism: When weight bears down on it, it springs back up. Without the gloves, when Martins’s fingers hit a key, they stay depressed; the steel bars pop them back up.

Watch this moving extract on YouTube about his happiness to be able to play again.

Modern technology can improve significantly lives and overcome disabilities. The potential is limitless, even without excessive technological complication.