Paralympics bronze medal winner Heike Eder: A lot is possible with positive thoughts and a helping of ambition!

You will never be able to walk again. ”That was the devastating diagnosis the doctors made when I woke up around 9 years ago after a serious skiing accident in a German specialist clinic. But an inner voice told me "it couldn't have been". With positive thoughts, a lot of willpower and ambition, I fought my way back - and today I am here. On my own two feet

I can still remember very well how I stood on skis for the first time when I was 5 years old. I was immediately "infected". Skiing became my great passion. As a student I made the leap into the national team, later took part in international FIS races and attended the ski school in Stams / Tyrol. Even at that time I was often struggling with injuries such as torn cruciate ligament or a tendon injury to my hand. But despite all these setbacks, I always did my best and fought my way back. At that point, I never thought of quitting.

Then nine years ago I had a serious skiing accident while training in Obergurgl. My hand got stuck in a goal during giant slalom training and was thrown into a moat. The consequences were fatal: life-threatening internal injuries, a fractured thigh and incomplete paraplegia that would accompany me for the rest of my life.

The doctors said "you will never be able to walk again".

When I woke up from a coma a few days after the accident in a German specialist clinic, the doctors had a terrible diagnosis: I would never be able to walk again. I don't know why or where it came from, but an inner voice told me at the time "that couldn't have been". Deep down, I was absolutely convinced that I would make further progress. I was aware that I might not be able to walk "normally" because of the injuries, but at least I didn't want to be dependent on a wheelchair any more.

In my mind I imagined my muscle moving again. After I felt a very small twitch, I knew that it could be done - if I only persist and fight. Thanks to luck, hard training and the unconditional support of my family and joy, I can now walk with crutches, have finished my studies and am fully employed. My passion for skiing is also unbroken despite my skiing accident.
In the meantime I am again skiing (with a monoski bob) in the youth team of the ÖSV and am committed to the Ski for life initiative, which aims to inspire disabled people to ski.

And even if I now lead a life with a disability, I can still honestly say that I am very happy with my life and that I never quarrel with my fate for a moment.

My message to everyone who has a similar fate behind them or a hard road ahead of them is: With positive thoughts and a helping of ambition, a lot is possible!