Just because you're a professional motorcycle and snowmobile racer doesn't mean that you can't revolutionize the world of prosthetics with an invention that will game-change the world of artificial joints! No biggie!
Mike Shultz has been in the X Games 11 times, but he has a special place in his heart for the lab! He has NO mechanical training and NO engineering background, but he has more motivation that anyone else! You see, he lost his left leg above the knee in December 2008 snowmobiling accident.
So he invented the Moto Knee and Versa Foot, to create a prosthetic leg for athletes to use in extreme sports — and it's blowing minds!
"I remember looking at the sole of my boot on top of my chest and I just threw it off as a reaction … that's not supposed to be there! And from that point on I was in the most excruciating pain."
He was then determined to race again, so he dreamed up a new leg built of mountain bike parts! WHO IS THIS GUY, MACGYVER??
The key ingredient was a mountain bike shock absorber to regulate joint stiffness with compressed air in the knee, but then he realized snowboarders and skateboarders depend on subtle but essential toe pressure and ankle tension to perform. The knee wasn't enough, so he created the Versa Foot, which uses a pneumatic shock absorber to imitate joint resistance!
"Five months after the accident. I was on the dirt bike track trying to qualify for the Summer X Games."
Not only did he make it to those games, but he also won the silver, and has since snatched four gold medals from the X Games!
INcredible! Keep up the amazing work, Mike!
Ch-ch-check out the limbs in action (above)!
[Image via AP Images.]