Bamboo is a terrible choice, because of the splinters.
I'm used to getting hit (martial arts) with either bokken (rigid,
usually red oak) and shinei (bamboo strips, somewhat flexible). A
bokken will easily break your arm if it accidentally contacts from a
hard blow, but a shinei is the one that's memorable for leaving
splinters behind, even in relatively gentle use (mostly they're used
for kendo, with armour).
Whatever you think of any therapy, if someone asks you to make a peice
of equipment for it, you should do your best as a woodworker, not
pretend to be Ben Goldacre.
C'mon ya'll. It seems we're making something difficult out of something simple.
The guy wants something small to push with - for whatever reason. Our
(ex)President was able to figure out something the same size and shape using
(genus, species) Nicotiana tabacum and it held up to the stress.
He said he's a novice. Without knowing what tools and supplies he has at his
disposal, if he were in the US I'd say get a 1/2 inch dowel or a clothes closet
hanger rod, a rasp, and sandpaper and have at it. A 4' dowel would give him 8
shots at it.
Whatever he has left he can make magic wands or chopsticks with.
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