Piotr Szwedowski ("Szwed") has been a Vital member for a long time, and we've been stoked to share his content in the past as we watched him grow as a rider while navigating this adventure called life. Piotr has been quiet lately, and we just found out why - he had a nasty crash last year which left him sidelined with multiple injuries to the spine, lung, shoulder and hand. True to form, Piotr has been working hard on his recovery but as he is a man with many irons in the fire, he's also found the time to create a signature goggle with Polish brand Born on Board (under the new sister brand name Born on Bike). Keep reading to hear directly from Piotr and learn more!
9 months ago I broke my spine. I also injured my lung, shoulder and a hand. I was very lucky with great heli mountain rescue action and even more lucky with a great surgeon that fixed my spine. It's a long road but I am able to ride now.
The heli gave me a ride to a very shitty hospital, they were afraid of doing spine surgery, it's crazy how small the world is; I made a post on FB about needing help, and two MTB riders that I know...well it turns out that they are great surgeons! They organized medical transport for me, after which they performed top class spine surgery (I was walking after 2 days!!!). It was definitely a hard one! Due to the fact that I wasn't able to ride I lost my income. I worked very hard every day on my mindset and how I am thinking. I was also doing physiotherapy for four hours every day, taking small steps and setting small goals with a never give up attitude. I was trying to be positive and happy with my family and on my side dealing with pain that was on a different level - I learned how to accept pain but avoid suffering.
I am so lucky with people around me, me biggest dream since I was a child was racing cars and now thanks to good people I am doing it!
Life is a gift and a beautiful process, I am starting each day from moving my legs and I watching my young son and wife sleep). I am riding OK now again, but I am far from pro level, because I have a huge empty space in my broken spine (I have to be very careful). Here is something recent that shows where I am at with my riding now:
I am working very hard now to support my family, as a Banshee Bikes distributor in Poland, and since 2020 I worked with a small rider owned snowboard brand on my own pro model goggle the SZWENDURO40. My crash stopped us for a year, but now finally we did it. It's something special because we worked with great artist who put my pickup truck and my trails on my goggles!
If you want to check out the goggles or maybe pick up a pair for yourself, head on over to www.bornonboard.com.