"No more pain because of a Vicair cushion"
My name is Joy Moonen (46), I’m an entrepreneur, married and mother. At my birth I had a lack of oxygen what caused me to have spasms. From my 4th until my 12th I used a manual wheelchair, until I made the switch to an electric wheelchair. When I was 14, my back was straightened and I have been told my whole life that one of my legs is longer than the other.
Truly listening to my body
My days are always full with plans. I like many things at once. I advise organisations on how they can contribute to an inclusive society, in all fields. I also develop and carry out of my own projects. I write books, I coach people and I am a speaker. When speaking at events fell away because of Corona, I got space and my body came to rest. Better said; I had the time to really listen to my body. My body had been giving signals for some time that things were not going well. In this period I had just spent a year on a Vicair cushion.
How I got to know Vicair
I was at a trade show where Vicair employees were my neighbours. They gave me one of their seat cushions. They said: ‘If there’s anything, let us know!’ And that moment had come.
“The length difference is not in your leg”
A home visit from Vicair followed. I told my story and the Vicair advisor listened sincerely. He took his time, something I often don’t experience. Together, we went looking for the right product, instead of the cheapest.
The Vicair advisor said to me at the fair: “The difference in length is not in your leg, but in your pelvis. It is rotated. Because of the rotation, the twist you have in your back is amplified. This causes your rib to press on your pelvis.”
Finally someone articulates what I have been feeling for years! ‘Does it hurt? Is it tiring?’ – Yes! But everyone I talked to about it over the past few years said something different. And the solution was never found before.
“Can you do anything about it? I asked. “Yes, I can.” This sounded convincing to me. The advisor continued: “It’s going to be a long haul, though. We’ll start with a different wheelchair seat cushion. Your chair is too big, so your seat cushion doesn’t fully fit your body.” The advisor was right, but if I wanted a smaller chair, it became a chair for children and it doesn’t have all the functionalities I need. “But then we’ll make your cushion smaller. So that your buttocks as well was your pelvis will get the support it needs.”
After a period of six weeks adjusting the seat cushion together every two weeks, I began to feel a difference. It was comparable to the (muscular) pain I knew when I had had an operation. When I was through that, I could independently position my pelvis differently. I had never been able to do that before!
I’m not in pain anymore
My posture changed every day. In agreement with the advisor, I started experimenting with the SmartCells myself in the various compartments of the wheelchair cushion. What do I need? How do I achieve that? Questions I always have when I want something from my body, but which I never got an answer to with previous seat cushions. Simply because there was nothing to experiment with. Or it was there, but I needed others to do it. With the Vicair cushion I could do this myself. Even if I wanted to several times a day. Finally I could answer the question my body was asking.
I thought we were there because I had a good seat cushion, but then Vicair’s back cushion came in. We’re only halfway there’. Said the advisor, while carrying several boxes inside. I was pleasantly surprised. Could there be more? I wondered. After two weeks, I knew there was definitely more that could be done! My knees were never right next to each other, one was – logically – further forward and therefore the other fell against it. Because I had been sitting on unstable seat cushions I slipped all day from left to right in my chair. This was already much better with the Vicair seat cushion.
The back cushion initially made me feel how jerky I had been with my upper body to keep my lower body under control. My whole body protested. Extra other cushions were needed to get my body used to the cushion. We attached these to the back shell with Velcro and then we put the Vicair back cushion against it.
‘Now put your backrest more backwards.’ Said the advisor. A miracle happened! My knees came out nicely next to each other. Jeez, it really can be done! The extra cushions disappeared until only the Vicair seat and back cushion remained. After decades, I was able to literally sit in a natural position. Even my organs found their original place again. My body had to make every effort to embrace this new position. But the results were worth it. My pelvis, my ribs, my knees and my shoulders have regained their natural position. My body has become six centimetres longer. And I, I have no more pain. Something everyone can see in my posture.
– Joy Moonen
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