St. Cloud native, Mike Schultz, lost his leg from the knee down after a severe snowmobiling injury. During his recovery, Schultz grew frustrated with the prosthetic options, as they didn’t provide him with the mobility he wanted to get back to his active lifestyle.
In 2010, out of his St. Cloud home, Schultz founded BioDapt, a company focused on designing, manufacturing and distributing high performance lower limb prosthetic components for action sports and other similar activities. BioDapt provided prosthetics for 15 athletes in the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea, an event where Schultz also competed for Team USA in parasnowboarding.
Mike Schultz and his wife, Sarah, received the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation’s Innovation Award for “Emerging Company” in November 2018. Watch their incredible story below!
In 2008, Mike Schultz was living his dream as a professional snowmobile racer, traveling the world to competing with the sport’s most elite athletes. After a bad start in a qualifying race, Schultz’s attempt to rapidly make up for lost time resulted in him being thrown from his machine. Upon impact, he suffered a severe compound fracture to his left leg.
Surgeons were able to bolt his leg back together, but Schultz suffered major post-surgery complications. Doctors advised that his best course of action was to amputate his leg from the knee down in order to survive. As one of the top snowmobile racers in the world, the news was devastating to him and his wife, Sarah.
It didn’t take Schultz long to move full speed ahead into the recovery process. Within six weeks, he was walking on his first prosthetic leg. Once he was walking, he was eager to get back to the active lifestyle he knew before his injury. However, finding a prosthetic leg that could keep up with his endeavors proved to be challenging, so Schultz decided to make one himself.
From sketch to development, Schultz’s first prosthetic prototype was complete in two weeks. As soon as he tested in on his first ride, he knew he had just created something special. His desire to solve his own problem quickly evolved into a much greater vision: to create high performance prosthetic equipment to help other amputees while providing himself an opportunity to build a new career outside of professional sports. BioDapt was born in 2010.
Today, BioDapt is focused on two pieces of equipment, the Moto Knee for above-knee amputees and the Versa Foot, which can be used with the knee or independently. Both products allow amputees to seamlessly transition to any and all athletic activities. From wake surfing to dirt biking, Schultz’s high performance products are filling an important gap in the prosthetic industry.
Professional snowboarders were among the first to express interest of BioDapt equipment. Although Schultz hadn’t tried snowboarding before becoming an amputee, it didn’t keep him from hitting the slopes to test his equipment. His natural athleticism took over, and by 2014, he was parasnowboarding for Team USA. Schultz worked his way all the way to the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea.
At the 2018 Winter Games, BioDapt outfitted almost the entire US parasnowboarding team as well as a handful of other athletes from around the world. Of the fifteen athletes competing with BioDapt equipment, eleven medals were won.
The Schultzs continue to run BioDapt from from their modest South St. Cloud property. They invite athletes from around the world to the area and leverage places places like Powder Ridge to test their products. As natives to the Greater St. Cloud area, they consider themselves lucky to be apart of this community.