CNC skills help athlete return to the X Games following a tragic accident
High school metal shop teacher, Luke Becker attended Southeast Technical’s Summer Continuing Education Training workshop in 2008. This program was designed for teachers to learn more about precision machining technology and CNC to utilize the technology in their own classrooms.
When his brother-in-law, Mike Schultz, lost his leg in a snowmobiling accident Becker was able to take the skills he learned in that workshop and step in to help with the process of building a new leg. "My first experience turning screws and using machines was at Southeast Technical," said Becker.
As an X Games world champion, Schultz refused to let losing a leg stop him. He designed and built a new leg specifically created to allow him to continue with his active sporting life. The MotoKnee, as he named it, was intended to help Schultz get back into action. It has now become a much bigger project with a wider focus.
Becker joined the team to help with production knees. To date, he has personally machined parts for and helped assemble approximately 50 prosthetic legs to help soldiers and athletes to be active again. "It's difficult to wrap my head around," said Becker. "I hope nobody ever needs this product and at the same time I am glad I am helping someone." Currently BioDapt, Inc is sending, on average, four MotoKnees per week to one of three military hospitals in the United States.
The MotoKnee has been tested in a variety of sports, such as
• Wake Boarding
• Cross Country Skiing
• Downhill Skiing
• Snow Boarding
• Horseback Riding
• Motor Cross Racing
For the first time with his new leg, Schultz competed in the Adaptive Motocross race at the 2009 Summer X Games. He won a silver medal. The following winter he won X Games gold in the Adaptive SnoCross race, and again in 2012 and 2013. In addition, the MotoKnee has helped nearly 70 people (and counting) return to an active life following an amputation.
Watch Mike Schultz' story on YouTube