Simon Cowell says 'I'm lucky to be alive' after almost dying in 2020

Simon Cowell
-Credit: (Image: 2023 Steve Granitz/Getty)

Simon Cowell has opened up on the time he almost died four years ago. Speaking to podcast host Steven Bartlett in his latest episode of Diary Of A CEO, the music mogul said he's lucky to be alive.

In 2020, the X Factor boss had a "very serious" freak accident, while using an electric motorbike. The 64-year-old fell off the bike in Malibu and had to undergo hours of surgery.

Steven Bartlett added: "Unfortunately at the time of the pandemic so we're all trapped inside. You were on a electric motorbike where you had an accident and broke your back in three places

"You had a very intense six-hour surgery, which included having a metal rod put into your back to stabilize it. According to all the accounts that I've heard you were very lucky to be alive."

Simon agreed: "Yeah... actually yeah, it was pretty bad." Steven replied: "I think that's an understatement from what I've heard."

The Britain's Got Talent judge admitted he had no idea how “unfit” he was before the accident. "I was getting up, going straight to the telephone, and I would sit by that telephone for hours, and hours, and hours. I really wasn't getting the steps in, I wasn't eating properly."

He continued: "So once I, you know, it was a bad accident - and I knew it was bad the second it happened. The recovery was pretty difficult."

"If I had to go back in time again to get to where I am today I would have gone through that again. As bad as it was the upside was worth it because if I hadn't broken my back I don't think I would have ever realized how unfit I really was."

Recalling the moment Simon realising just how bad his fall was, he said: "It got so bad I had to sign a form just before I had the operation, which was 'if this doesn't work out, will you allow us to switch to the machine off'.

"I'm like, 'well that's encouraging', just before I'm about to go under. So I'm thinking, 'this could be it'. But I was in so much pain, I was just thinking, 'just please get me out of this pain'."

Detailing how tough his recovery process was, Simon explained: "I had a fantastic nurse. She was like, you know how a cuckoo just pushes the bird out of the nest.

"Just one day, she said to me, 'just get out into your garden and even if you walk 20 paces, just do it'. And I did it, and it was hard and then I just built up and started to build up my step count over time."