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Step by Step

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Photo: Video by IdahoOnYourSide.com

Step by Step

By Don Nelson. CREATED Sep 17, 2013

It's called PFFD...a rare non-hereditary birth defect that affects the pelvis, "My left leg didn’t develop correctly, so I'm missing my hip joint."

Personally, Matt would be the first to tell you growing up with an abnormality isn't the most ideal childhood.  "I think being a teenage boy is awkward and hard enough anyway so i was no smooth operator with the girls."

It didn't take long to impress the girls and the rest of his classmates that he meant business in the area of competitive sports.

After a short stint wresting...Matt turned his sights on the slopes where he excelled...so much so, he made the ski team in college....then the U-S Disabled ski team came calling.

"It was definitely one of those thank God I don't have to work full time anymore," so...he competed for a chance to go to the Nagano Paralympics in 1998.

"The joke among the team was one group going to Nagano, and one group that's not going to go."
It was Nagano for Matt...then after retiring from ski racing in 2002 he turned to triathlons.

"Just as a fresh method or different way to get myself into better shape I opted to sign up for one."
"I was immensely slow...it wasn't fun I don't think."

So Matt leaned a little more on training harder...especially swimming where as you can imagine with no prosthetics, it's a chore.

"Are you used to it, are you doing more with your left side? in fact I'm pretty right hand dominant most of my side it's definitely something to work on to even it out."

After he gets out of the water a support team, usually his wife will make sure his attachments for biking and running are ready for him.

"This has the same attachment as the bike, the same method, as far as stepping in."  And that takes us to his professional life where with his father have built and grown rehab systems and coyote design into a very successful orthotics and prosthetic company.

As a matter of fact in 2012 coyote design was awarded the blue ribbon by the U-S chamber of commerce as a dream big small business of the year.

"Essentially we tackle a problem we run into some issues either the fabrication side or how the product relates to the patient and then we come up with different ideas to solve those issues."
Even though matt's professional and personal lives overlap, he competes to satisfy his competitive drive.

But, if anyone else using any one of his products was inspired by his story....I'm sure he'd be just fine with that.