“On 22 May 2018, my life changed out of the blue with the diagnosis of Guillain Barré syndrome, an acute disease that affects neural pathways. Two days after admission to an acute hospital, my body was completely paralysed. I was then transferred to the Swiss Paraplegic Centre, where I spent two months on the Intensive Care Unit learning how to breathe, swallow and speak again. But my body was still paralysed.
During the ten-month rehabilitation period, I trained hard and gradually fought my way back to independence. I switched from my electric wheelchair to a manual wheelchair and was eventually able to leave the clinic using a rollator. Since then I have continued to train with an iron will. Progress occurs in small steps.”
Physiotherapist Tobias Becker helps patients in the Swiss Paraplegic Centre to gradually achieve greater autonomy. The hope of achieving as much independence as possible is a major motivating factor for people with a spinal cord injury. The physiotherapist tells us how he experiences and supports motivation as a form of strength.