In the heat of training and competition, things can easily get damaged. A wheelchair frame breaks, or an artificial limb gets cracked. No problem for the Ottobock orthopaedics firm, whose tradesmen and women repair everything free of charge during the INVICTUS GAMES DÜSSELDORF 2023 presented by Boeing in their on-site workshop.
In the all the excitement of a wheelchair rugby match, a wheelchair frame may break, or an artificial limb become damaged. Where prosthetics are concerned, lamination can dissolve in the heat of a competition or artificial limbs may even break apart completely. What then? Does a match have to cancelled because the material needs repair?
No, because Ottobock SE & Co. KGaA provides on-site assistance. The international company based in Duderstadt specialises in the field of orthopaedic technology and is a global market leader in prosthetics. “We have set up a workshop with machines and a large spare parts store and repair everything that we can repair” says technician Marcus Czekalla.
The tradesmen and women can even carry out welding tasks in their workshop. Fitting parts for artificial limbs and a multitude of wheelchair tyres can be found in the shelves. The company philosophy: We link innovative products and individual care to form a holistic approach. We help people to maintain or regain their mobility.
As early as Friday, the day on which training began in the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA, they were called into action. A competitor from Colombia was particularly grateful when his broken carbon prosthetic foot could be replaced by a new one.
“We fiddle about until the problem is resolved,” explains Czekalla. The service is free of charge to all, even the cost of the materials is covered. The tradesmen and women work in two shifts and are there for the competitors from 8am to 6pm.
Should wheelchair repairs take a bit longer, replacements are available that can be borrowed until the defective wheelchair is ready. Product samples ranging from everyday artificial limbs all the way to microprocessor-controlled knee joints and artificial limbs with springs that recuperate energy and can thus act as a substitute for the feet. High-tech that you can actually touch and feel, a new experience for many people.
For Czekalla, being able to help is the greatest reward: “The competitors are very glad that we are here. We are shown a lot of gratitude.”
Author: Monika Hartjes
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