KYB Corporation employee Takeshi Suzuki will be competing in the Winter Paralympics in Pyeong Chang, South Korea.
KYB Corporation is an official sponsor and official supplier to the Japanese Para-Ski Federation Alpine Team and the technical team of KYB Motorcycle Suspension Company is involved with technical development and technical support for chair ski shock absorbers. On the chair equipped with a single ski plate, the competitor manoeuvers the chair ski with two outriggers with small plates in both hands, controlling balance. For the Pyeong Chang model, KYB removed everything unnecessary from each component to make it lightweight. It also has a wider range of damping force adjustability, it can respond to slight changes in the conditions, so the skier can ski how they want to. This top class model was designed together with several top athletes, including Takeshi Suzuki.
The competition takes place between 9th – 18th March. There will be 670 competitors competing in 80 medal events, across six sporting disciplines. Chair ski races consist of four events: downhill, super giant slalom, giant slalom and slalom. They all use one plate on their chair ski. The shock absorber reduces the impact and vibration from the snow surface, playing the role of the skier’s knee. It can be adjusted according to the characteristic of the race by regulating the damping force or the coil spring.
Takeshi Suzuki works in the PR department for KYB in Japan. He is 30 years old and lost both his legs in a traffic accident when he was a child. He started chair skiing when he was 9 years old and watching the Paralympics when he was young inspired him to compete. His preparation for this year’s competition has included high altitude training in Chile, by the end of which he was able to ride a hand bike for 75 minutes at an altitude of 3,600 metres. Suzuki has already two Paralympic medals, Bronze in 2010 and Gold in 2014. He has also won several World Cup Gold medals.