NEARLY 6,000 miles stands between Queen Alexandra Hospital and this summer’s Olympic Games in Rio.
And that is the distance a dedicated team of staff will cycle on static bikes to raise money for a piece of equipment.
The bike has been a major part of my therapy and the staff have been fantastic.Ray Nevitt
QA’s neuro physiotherapy team is fundraising for a specialist therapy bike for their patients to use as part of their rehabilitation.
The bike lets people to start moving and exercising sooner while in hospital, which improves their mobility later in life as they recover from their brain injury or stroke. And the bike can be used when sitting in a wheelchair making it more accessible.
Ray Nevitt, from Gosport, was able to walk again after using a specialist therapy bike. He said: ‘I had a stroke two months ago which affected everything on my right-hand side and my speech.
‘Before using the bike, I couldn’t walk on my right leg. Every time I tried my leg collapsed due to having no strength in my knee.
‘From using the bike, it has strengthened my leg and I can now walk with a walking stick. The bike has been a major part of my therapy and the staff have been fantastic.’
To raise the £7,000 needed, over the next six weeks the team will take on the distance. As part of the challenge, they will ride for 12 hours in the hospital’s main entrance in a Ride to Rio 12-hour Cyclathon.
Fungus Addams, physiotherapy technician at QA said: ‘After a stroke or brain injury our patients often have muscle weakness and joint stiffness making it difficult for them to move and engage in activity.
‘In addition patients who are not physically active can rapidly become de-conditioned and weak, which can lead to other problems.
‘When we trialed using the specialist exercise bike with our patients we were able to start improving on these problems, particularly as the bike has an ‘assisted mode’ that allows even the most impaired patients to engage in an exercise programme early on in the process of their recovery.
The neuro physiotherapy department had been loaned a specialist therapy bike but had to give itt back.
To make a donation, visit their Virgin Money Giving page at bit.do/RidetoRio