David Thompson - Paragolfer
Innovative golf buggy gives disabled golfer his swing back
MS sufferer regains confidence on the golf course and claims victory at the recent Golf Trust Disabled Open tournament thanks to the Paragolfer from Ottobock
David Thompson, a keen golfer and MS sufferer from Bournemouth, has recently taken part in the Golf Trust Disabled Open, held at The Shire London golf course, and came first in his handicap group after a 6 year absence from the sport. David’s surprising return to form on the golf course is in a great part due to a unique all-terrain buggy for disabled golfers. Developed by mobility experts Ottobock, the Paragolfer lifts users from a sitting to a standing position enabling an upright posture for unrestricted shoulder movement, essential for a golf swing.
David was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2003 and as a result thought he would never be able to play golf again due to fatigue and difficulties with walking. Following his diagnosis, David had to leave his job as a taxi driver and suffered from bouts of depression. As a keen golfer who enjoyed an active lifestyle playing several times a week, David was devastated by the news and opted to give away his clubs believing he would have no further use for them.
David has since joined his local MS Society, who introduced him to the Golfing4All charity that provides a Paragolfer and tuition at Ferndown Forest golf club, Dorset, for those with disabilities who want to get back on the course or who want to start something new. Following his discovery of the buggy, David has been enjoying more confidence, enthusiasm and stronger fitness levels. He recently won his handicap group at the Golf Trust Disabled Open and has also had great success in other tournaments including playing against able-bodied opponents.
“Before discovering Golfing4All I thought my chances of ever playing golf again were gone,” said David Thompson. “MS is a degenerative condition and made a big impact on my life, the Paragolfer and tuition that Golfing4All provides has given me so much enthusiasm and changed my outlook on life as golfing has always been a passion of mine. Following regular use my fitness levels have increased and the social aspect has been great, I was absolutely delighted with my success at the Golf Trust Disabled Open earlier this year.”
Ottobock’s Paragolfer – from sitting to standing for a full golf swing
The Paragolfer from Ottobock is a mobility solution that allows users with a walking impediment to do sports that require an upright body position. The buggy has a motorised seat lift that goes from a horizontal to vertical position; any position between seated and standing can be assumed with the aid of a knee belt. The high-powered drive system is battery powered with all-terrain tyres that enable the Paragolfer to drive on various surfaces and provide easy manoeuvrability. Along with the many physical benefits of the buggy, it also offers the psychological benefit of communicating with others at eye level.
Ian Purchase, founder at Golfing4All stated, “The Paragolfer from Ottobock allows the user to feel the freedom and independence from standing up and playing golf. It also comes with many therapeutic benefits including increased circulation and digestion, and all our users have thoroughly enjoyed using it. Golfing4All is delighted to be able to provide the Paragolfer free to less-able people who want to get on the golf course and we can even help arrange lessons if required. The charity was put together by a group of passionate, like-minded people who want to promote the access and possibilities available to those that will benefit from standing up and playing golf.”
For more information on Ottobock’s range of innovative solutions that restore mobility please visit www.ottobock.co.uk or follow @ottobockuk.
Golfing4All offers the Paragolfer free of charge for all disabled users and can help arrange subsidised lessons with golfing expert Darren Stratman. To find out more visit www.golfing4all.org.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Ottobock is a world leading supplier of high quality, innovative and practical solutions that restore human mobility and help people to rediscover personal independence. Ottobock is part of the Ottobock global group of companies established in the UK in 1976. Its wide product range includes high quality prosthetic and orthotic components, wheelchairs, rehabilitation and mobility products available through the country's leading clinics and dealers. With a highly motivated and skilled team of professionals offering expert advice, product sales, service and support, Ottobock solutions enhance the physical comfort, confidence and mobility of the individual. Ottobock aims to achieve the best possible outcome for its customers, combining the latest technology with cutting-edge products and services.
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Golf is a lot like real life, where you also have to overcome various highs and lows. Not a problem with the ParaGolfer: The versatile all-terrain golf cart allows you to move across the green effortlessly and safely to concentrate only on what matters: playing golf.
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