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Symbitron+ Exoskeleton Race Team

The Symbitron+ team will be participating in the powered exoskeleton race of the Cybathlon 2020 in Zürich. During the powered exoskeleton race, pilots with complete paraplegia will negotiate an obstacle course consisting of typical everyday tasks such as climbing stairs or sitting down on a chair.

Origin and goal

The Symbitron+ team originated from the EU Symbitron project. Its main goal is to enhance functional walking abilities of people with Spinal Cord Injury by improving the symbiotic interaction between the human and the exoskeleton.


The Symbitron exoskeleton is a force controlled exoskeleton with actuation on hip, knee and ankle. It provides the necessary support to people with complete or incomplete paralysis of the legs. Active propulsion and balance control are our current developments. See here for more information on the exoskeleton.


My name is Niek, I am 25 years old and I live in Enschede. My passion has always been working on and driving cars. Together with my girlfriend we have participated in several car races. We really like to race!

The reason for my paraplegia is cancer. First I had a tumour in my head, and later two in my spine. The latter ones caused my paraplegia. Luckily, years of chemotherapy worked, and since two years the tumours are gone.

Currently, I am the pilot of the Symbitron+ team to take part in the Cybathlon. I am really motivated to negotiate all the obstacles and I spent hours on training to beat the record times for each of these obstacles using our exoskeleton.


With the financial support of our sponsors, we are further improving the hardware, control and user interface of the Symbitron exoskeleton with the ultimate aim of winning the Cybathlon 2020.


The CYBATHLON is a competition for people with disabilities, who, supported by the latest assistance systems in various disciplines, compete against each other and solve everyday tasks. The first edition was organized in Zurich in 2016, and the second edition will be organised in 2-3 May 2020 in Zurich. Satellite events, such as the CYBATHLON experience and CYBATHLON series, will be organized in different countries.

For more information about the CYBATHLON you can visit its website.