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Santacana: from the operating table to olympic gold in six months

17 Feb 2016
Healthcare
https://vimeo.com/155318928

In the greatest moment of his sporting career, and only six months before the Paralympic Games in Sochi, skier Jon Santacana ruptured his Achilles Tendon. But against all odds, he did not throw in the towel and he managed a full recovery which brought him to the podium. How did he do it? He tells us in this story.

Jon Santacana, Paralympic skier:

My name is Jon Santacana, I'm a Paralympic skier. At age 8, I was diagnosed with a degenerative vision problem which helped me to discover something that has truly been my passion, skiing. I have participated in 4 Paralympic games, in several World Championships, I have been on the national team for 15 years and I consider myself as someone who is a fighter, is confident and works very hard toward his goals.

"Santacana has only 5% vision and skies with his guide, Miguel Galindo"

In 2013 we were certainly in one of the best shapes of our lives, as Miguel and I had been working and training together for many years and we were preparing for these Sochi games which were only 6 months away and we were entering the final stretch.

During a physical training, at the start of running, I felt as if someone had kicked me from behind and I fell to the ground, I turned around and no one was there. It was at that moment my body knew that I could not get back on my feet, it knew that I was hurt. It was difficult because I had to return to Spain, 25 hours alone in a plane, when I learned that I had ruptured my Achilles Tendon and that we were talking that the recovery would take a minimum of 6-8 months. 

These were very intense months with 8-hour work days, in 4 and a half months I was already able to do my recovery out on the snow and I was able to attend the Sochi games and we even managed to win a gold medal.

"Santacana and Galindo won a gold and a silver along with two fourth place finishes"

The main factors for a rapid recovery like mine are surgery, medical treatment, physiotherapy together with a strong will and the supplements which can help regenerate ruptured tissues In my case, I was taking Tendoactive for practically 3 months which is what helped me to regenerate the tendon more quickly.

Obviously while recovering from an injury there are high and low points. I feel that I have trusted greatly in the environment which has helped me, in a multidisciplinary team, and in myself. I believed that I could achieve these things.