Former physician to run marathon 10 years after paralyzing accident

Save Story
Leer en espaƱol

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

SALT LAKE CITY -- A former Utah physician paralyzed in 1999 will celebrate a 10-year anniversary next week by running a marathon. After his trampoline accident, doctors said Dr. Dale Hull would never leave his joy stick-operated power chair, but that was then!

Rehab is what Hull is all about: from a wheelchair, to canes, to no canes at all. Though partial paralysis remains, he walks.

While we walk unconsciously, Hull now walks by concentrating on the very mechanics of walking. "I mean, I can walk, but I also have to kind of think about this: heel strike, heel strike, come straight through," he explained.

A television monitor shows how Dr. Dale Hull is able to run under water.
A television monitor shows how Dr. Dale Hull is able to run under water.

Though his gait works when walking, it doesn't do so well running; synchronization falls apart. But when Hull steps in a pool with the treadmill underwater, it's a different story. Though water is 700 times denser than air and resistance is a challenge, its buoyancy lets him run.

"Well, here it is. I can run. I can't run on land; I can run in the water. So, I need to push myself a little bit more," he said.

Now, 10 years after the accident, Hull plans to run a 26.2 mile marathon in the pool at a community-based clinic called Neuroworx. He's been training five months.

"Monday through Friday I run minutes, and Saturday I run for mileage. So, I've been following a set plan, so I've logged about 375 miles in training. So next week, I feel like I'm pretty ready," Hull said.

Ready, he hopes, to run his first marathon in five and a half hours; an average of 12 minutes per mile.

Backers of this unique marathon hope to raise $10,000 for the Dale B. Hull Foundation. Money there is used to fund rehab equipment and patient scholarships.


Related links

Most recent Utah stories

Related topics

Ed Yeates


    Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the Trending 5.
    By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

    KSL Weather Forecast