Sports-teacher Neil Joisce suffered an injury over 10 years ago that stopped him playing semi-professional sports, but with a SAFO® from Dorset Orthopaedic, he continues to lead an incredibly active lifestyle.
In 2002, Neil was involved in a collision on his right knee whilst playing rugby that resulted in various ligament, tendon and nerve damage. Since the accident Neil has endured nine operations on his leg and one on his back. His injuries have resulted in ‘Drop Foot’ or ‘Foot Drop’ whereby the muscles that actively dorsiflex the ankle and foot have weakened, causing difficulty in lifting his foot up.
Neil received his newest SAFO (Silicone Ankle Foot Orthosis)from the Dorset Orthopaedic team in March 2013. The award-winning Orthosis supports the front of Neil’s leg down to the top of his foot. This helps Neil lift his foot whilst his leg swings during walking. Without the SAFO, Neil feels he could not keep up with his active lifestyle and career.
Neil now teaches Physical Education at the Hampshire Collegiate School near Southampton, where he originally studied. He is also Head of Boys Sports, Personal Social Health Education (PSHE) and has most recently been promoted to Head of Year, to commence in September 2013.
“The SAFO is vital for me to be able to do my job effectively. As a qualified sports teacher I need to be able to coach pupils, referee sports matches and stay active, the SAFO lets me do this.”
Before his accident Neil was a Semi-Professional Rugby player. Being able to partake in sports and be involved physically with his children Jack, aged 4 and Tom, aged 2, is very important to him.
“The SAFO has given me back a healthy everyday life. I can run, play golf and walk my dog with the SAFO. I can also chase after my boys. Jack has got a new bike and I can run alongside him whilst he learns how to ride as long as I put on my SAFO!”
Neil’s story has also featured on Enable Magazine’s website, read the full story here.
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