Andy Ibbott, our client has just competed in the most gruelling event: The Marathon des Sables (MdS).
Andy walked 65 km in approximately 24 hours across the Sahara Desert over endless dunes, rocky mountains and blistering heat raising money for Scope.
The MdS event comprises of 6 marathons in 6 days. Andy and Rob have completed the first two marathons and now Jon Graham, Clinical Director PhysioFunction, will continue carrying the baton for Andy's team (Team Big Tortoise) with the rest of the Marathons taking place over the next 4 days.
Keep an eye on our Facebook page for regular updates on Team Big Tortoise's progress: @physiofunction
Team Big Tortoise are still competing in this event (3 days left to go), please help to meet Andy's target of £25,000 by making a donation to Scope via the following link: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/bigtortoise
Andy suffered a major stroke in 2011, leaving him unable to speak or move his right hand side. Andy refused to give up. His main aim was to walk again and to get back the use of his right hand. After weeks of gruelling exercises his speech began to improve, although he was still experiencing problems with his right hand side. Andy was told that his recovery had plateaued and that he would always walk with a limp and a cane.
Having seen how far he had come, Andy refused to accept that he would be forced to walk with a cane for the rest of his life, so he continued his rehabilitation with Neurological Physiotherapist (and Clinical Director) Jon Graham from PhysioFunction and over the past six years Andy has made remarkable progress.
Helping Andy prepare for the MdS....
To help Andy prepare for the MdS, Andy has undertaken an intensive stroke rehabilitation programme with PhysioFunction. The programme content has been based on the three principles of our Rehabilitation Triad – Hands On Therapy combined with Technology and Exercise.
The programme includes:
• Weekly one-hour ‘Hand’s on Therapy’ sessions with our Neuro Physio team. Activities focus on Andy’s core stability, strength and stamina so that he can tackle walking up sand dunes and mountainous territory.
• Andy has used a combination of FES technology* and orthotics (where appropriate) along his rehab journey to help with his walking. He now uses the Turbo Med Exoskeleton Ankle Foot orthosis to help correct his foot drop.
• A tailored exercise programme that includes walking everyday and weekly sessions at PhysioFunction. Neuro Fit is functional strength and aerobic group workout, designed for people with neurological conditions. The hour-long class is led by a personal trainer and Neuro Physiotherapist so that exercises can be adapted to individual needs.
• 1 to 1 tailored exercise sessions with Jon Graham in a 40-degree room environment so that Andy gets used to the warmth of the desert.
Massive Congratulations to Andy ...
Andy has come a long way from his initial diagnoses and it has always been his dream to compete in the MdS. We are proud that Andy has been able to compete in this event, a dream that seemed impossible 6 years ago.
*FES uses small electrical signals to stimulate the nerves in the leg causing muscles to contract and produce a movement that can help lift the foot at the correct angle for taking a step and prevent the foot from dragging on the ground.