Home Applications & Case Studies Elle: 3D Printed Prosthetic Leg for Swimmers

Elle: 3D Printed Prosthetic Leg for Swimmers

Della Tosin, student at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, has designed a 3D printed prosthetic leg for swimmers, the so called “Elle”. 

Elle is designed to optimise single-leg amputees’ swimming experience by supporting the body, achieving balance and maximising energy return of launch off and flip-turns. Tosin is a swimmer herself and wanted to create a device to allow amputees to race with able-bodied swimmers.

“Through thoughtful discussion and feedbacks received with interviewees and mentors, I found that every person has different buoyancy because of the different body mass.”

Adjusted to the individual hight and weight of the swimmer, the Elle leg is 3D printed before a carbon fiber composite is laid on top. Then the vacuum socket, which is thermoformed from a mold, as well as a molded silicon fin are attached. An adjustable air chamber allows for custom buoyancy and the interchangeable fin can be adapted to the swimmer’s capacities and needs.


The third prototype has been successfully tested and the designer’s next step will be to find the right manufacturer and sponsor in order to launch her product to the market.

After winning a few awards for her design already, Tosin is now aiming for the James Dyson Award.

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