(EUROPE)

The world’s first Cybathlon took place in Switzerland at the weekend showcasing how novel technologies can assist people with disabilities in their daily life.

There were six disciplines on the programme at the sold-out SWISS Arena Kloten,including the the Functional Electrical Stimulation Bike Race (FES) and the Brain-Computer Interface Race (BCI).

ETH President Lino Guzzella said: “What began as ETH Professor Robert Riener’s vision has burgeoned into a major international event. Today, the Cybathlon thrilled spectators from all over the world and demonstrated most impressively just what technology has to offer in assisting humans. Developing solutions that help advance our society: this is what ETH Zurich stands for.”

Robert Riener, Cybathlon initiator and Professor for Sensory-Motor Systems at ETH Zurich added: “People with a physical disability that restricts daily life – these are the real winners of the Cybathlon. And as we have seen today, great things can be achieved when their needs directly influence the development of new assistive technology. I am very proud of the work of almost 70 teams, and delighted that the Cybathlon has awakened such interest worldwide.”