SOURCE: Ossur

May 06, 2008 13:19 ET

Team Ossur Member Jeff Skiba -- The First Amputee in History to Clear Seven Feet in the Men's High Jump

A Banner Week for Paralympians

ALISO VIEJO, CA--(Marketwire - May 6, 2008) - Soaring to new heights seems effortless to Jeff Skiba and never more so than on May 1, 2008, when the 24 year old U.S. Paralympian set a new, unofficial men's high jump world record (men's F44 classification), thus becoming the first amputee in history to clear seven feet at the 2008 Asuza Pacific Invitational in Los Angeles, California. All at Ossur take pleasure in congratulating this remarkable below-the-knee amputee and a Team Ossur member, as well.

Jeff jumped 2.15 meters (7 feet 1/2 inch), beating his previous world record of 2.10 meters (6 feet 10 3/4 inches), but the height is an unofficial Paralympic world record because the Asuza Invitational was not an International Paralympic Committee (IPC) sanctioned meet.

On February 24, 2007, Jeff became the first Paralympic athlete to compete at the U.S. Indoor Championships -- a USA Track & Field able-bodied national championship event; an achievement made all the more remarkable when you consider that he only has one leg.

"I am ecstatic to be the first Paralympic athlete to jump seven feet. A lot of people have worked long and hard to help me achieve this and I am grateful for all of the support," said Jeff.

Born without a fibula in his left leg due to a congenital defect known as fibular hemimelia, doctors amputated his leg below the knee when he was less than a year old. Jeff tried out for track in 6th grade and so began his athletic career. In high school, a coach noticed Skiba playing basketball (he can dunk!), encouraged him to join the track team and Jeff delivered. At his first meet, he cleared 6'2" in the high jump event. The following year -- 2001 -- at the Husky Indoor Invitational, he jumped 6'6 3/4".

"This was a banner week for Paralympians and amputees all over the world," said Tabi King, marketing director for Ossur Americas. "Jeff flew over the 7 foot mark. Natalie du Toit took fourth place yesterday in the 10km at the World Open-Water Swimming Championships, thus becoming the first Paralympian to qualify for the Olympics. Bilateral amputee Oscar Pistorius -- another Team Ossur member -- ranked as one of TIME magazine's 100 most influential people in the world. I believe we can state, unequivocally, that it is possible to live a life without limitations, and that these young people are inspirations to us all."

Ossur

Ossur (NASDAQ/OMX: OSSR) is a global leader in non-invasive orthopaedics that help people to live a life without limitations. Its business is focused on improving people's mobility through the delivery of innovative technologies within the fields of braces, supports, prosthetic limbs and compression therapies. A recognized "Technology Pioneer," Ossur invests significantly in research and product development; its award-winning designs ensuring a consistently strong position in the market. Successful patient and clinical outcomes are further empowered via Ossur's educational programs and business solutions. Headquartered in Iceland, Ossur has major operations in the Americas, Europe and Asia, with additional distributors worldwide. www.ossur.com

Contact Information

  • Contacts:

    Ossur Americas:
    Tabi King
    Marketing and Public Relations Director
    (949) 360-3756
    Email Contact

    Public Relations:
    Beverly Millson
    Missing Sock Public Relations
    Office: (310) 399-7599
    Cell: (310) 804-3469
    Email Contact