Dynamic Elastomeric Fabric Orthoses: Empowering Children’s Mobility

Dynamic Elastomeric Fabric Orthoses (DEFOs) have revolutionised pediatric orthopedic care, providing children with tailored support and mobility solutions. These innovative devices, crafted from flexible materials, offer a range of benefits to children facing various musculoskeletal challenges. Let’s explore what DEFOs are, the reasons children might use them, and the diverse benefits they offer.

Understanding DEFOs

DEFOs are specialised orthotic devices designed to support children’s bodies while allowing natural movement. Unlike traditional braces, DEFOs utilise flexible materials like elastomeric fabric, ensuring children can move comfortably and confidently as they play and explore their surroundings. There are many different types of dynamic elastomeric fabric orthoses, like Dynamic Movement Orthoses (DMO suits). You can read more about the different types below.

Causes for Using Dynamic Elastomeric Fabric Orthoses in Children

1. Neuromuscular Conditions

Children with conditions such as cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy often experience muscle weakness or imbalances, affecting their mobility and coordination. DEFOs provide targeted compression and support, enhancing stability and motor function.

2. Developmental Delays

Some children may face delays in their motor development, impacting their ability to achieve typical movement milestones. DEFOs offer dynamic alignment and proprioceptive input, aiding in motor skill development and postural control.

3. Foot and Ankle Issues

Foot and ankle problems like flat feet or toe-walking can hinder a child’s ability to walk comfortably and maintain balance. DEFOs designed for the lower limbs provide customised support and alignment, promoting stability and reducing discomfort.

4. Spinal Disorders

Conditions like scoliosis or kyphosis can lead to spinal misalignments and postural issues in children. DEFOs offer dynamic stabilisation and alignment, assisting in posture correction and reducing spinal curvature.

5. Rehabilitation and Injury Prevention

Following an injury or surgery, children may require additional support to aid in their recovery and prevent further injury. DEFOs provide targeted assistance, promoting healing and facilitating a safe return to physical activities.

Benefits of dynamic elastomeric fabric orthoses for children

1. Customised Support

DEFOs are individually tailored to fit each child’s unique body shape and address specific musculoskeletal needs. This personalised support ensures optimal comfort and effectiveness, allowing children to move freely and confidently.

2. Dynamic Flexibility

Unlike rigid orthotic devices, DEFOs are made from flexible materials that allow for natural movement. Children can engage in physical activities without feeling restricted, promoting mobility and independence.

3. Comfort and Compliance

DEFOs are lightweight, breathable, and comfortable to wear, encouraging children to wear them consistently throughout the day. The soft elastomeric fabric conforms to the child’s body, minimising pressure points and maximising comfort.

4. Improved Mobility and Function

By providing targeted support and alignment, DEFOs help enhance children’s mobility, stability, and overall function. Children can navigate their environment with confidence, participating in activities and social interactions with ease.

5. Enhanced Development and Confidence

DEFOs not only support physical function but also promote developmental progress and self-confidence in children. With improved movement skills and greater independence, children can better engage in learning, play, and socialisation.

Examples of DEFOs for Children

Stabilising Pressure Input Orthosis (SPIO)

Provides dynamic stabilisation and alignment for children with neuromuscular conditions or spinal disorders.


Offers dynamic alignment and support for children with developmental delays or orthopedic issues, promoting proper movement patterns and motor development.

Spiral Skins

Provides customised support and alignment for children with foot and ankle issues, aiding in stability and mobility.

DMO Suits (Dynamic Movement Orthoses)

Offers dynamic alignment and proprioceptive input for children with motor delays or coordination issues, facilitating movement and postural control.

Second Skin

Provides dynamic stabilisation and support for children with spinal disorders or postural abnormalities, aiding in posture correction and comfort.


Offers dynamic alignment and proprioceptive input for children with neuromuscular conditions or motor delays, promoting motor skill development and functional independence.

In conclusion, Dynamic Elastomeric Fabric plays a vital role in supporting children’s mobility and enhancing their quality of life. With their flexible design, customised fit, and targeted support, DEFOs empower children to move, play, and thrive to their fullest potential, regardless of their musculoskeletal challenges.