Amputation launches new career for X Games snocross gold medalist

- Since the time he could ride, racing has been Mike Schultz's world. From dirtbikes to snowmobiles, he's done it all -- even professional competition at the X Games

"I was living my dream,” Schultz said. “I was a professional athlete."

But in December of 2008, that world came crashing down.

"I wasn't able to hang on to it, and the snowmobile went side to side and I got pitched off,” Schultz said. “On impact it broke my knee, and I kicked myself in the chin, and I remember that visual. They said, ‘You're really sick. We think the best way forward is to amputate your leg.’”

Schultz was sure he was done competing. But physical rehab eventually led to revving up again.

"I was on the snowmobile and feeling the wind in my face again,” Schultz said. “It just felt normal again."

And that path paved the way to another sports opportunity...

"Instantaneously, I knew this leg wasn't gonna cut it,” Schultz said. “I researched different things, realized there wasn't equipment available.”

Schultz started making his own prosthetic in his garage, which marked Day 1 of Bio-Dapt.

"I hit the drawing board in March 2009, and had my first working prototype a week later,” Schultz said. “It uses compressed air, has a spring, and that's what gives it the resistance."

Schultz and his wife Sara turned that idea into the company they run out of their St. Cloud home, and he assembles each and every prosthetic for customers by hand.

"The assembly of a moto-knee is an hour and half,” Schultz said. “Custom for all of our clients. I'm a pretty busy guy."

Schultz's road to recovery hit a speed bump about a year ago, when he broke his right heel into pieces -- a 6-month recovery process. But in January, he wrote another comeback story.

“Just won my fifth gold medal in adaptive snocross,” Schultz said. "I have the ultimate research and development job. I get to go out on the race track all the time."

Standing on the podium is a fantastic feeling for Mike Schultz, but lending a helping hand, or foot, to others is a new and maybe more thrilling adventure.

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