There are many women out there who inspire us to reach for our goals and dreams by having overcome physical challenges of their own. Hereare 5 Great Women Who Overcame Their Physical Challenges.
RELATED: Natalie du Toit – Inspiring Woman of the month
1. Natalie Du Toit
In 2001 Natalie lost her left leg in a motorcycle accident at the age of 14. But this setback didn’t stop the young swimmer from competing two years later in the Common Wealth Games as an able bodied and disabled competitor. She proved it could be done by being the first amputee to swim in the finals of an able bodied international competition.
She is now one of the world fastest distance swimmers and the only amputee to have qualified for the Olympic Games. She is also one of the most inspirational and successful disabled athletes in the world.
2. Bethany Hamilton
After having her left arm bitten off by a shark at the age of 13, this young surfer has become a source of inspiration to millions through her story of determination and faith. What then seemed like the end of her surfing career was only the beginning. Just one month after the attack she returned to the water and later to the world of surfing competitions.
A year later she went on to take first place at the Explorers Women division in 2005. Since then she turned pro and has gone onto compete in several international competitions. Her story was even made into a film called Soul Surfer, featuring a star cast including Carrie Underwood, Helen Hunt and Anna Sophia Robb.
3. Melissa Stockwell
After waking up in a Baghdad ER in 2004, the furthest thing from Melissa’s mind was becoming a Paralympian. She lost her leg after a roadside bomb exploded on the streets of Iraq. But this didn’t stop her from making a life for herself and hoping that things would be alright. And indeed they did.
After being medically retired from the army, her dream was born to take part in the 2008 Paralympic Games in China. She qualified and became a record holder for the 100m butterfly and the 100m freestyle. Since then she has turned to para-triathlon, a sport which will make its debut in the 2016 Paralympic Games.
4. Aimee Mullins
Born without fibulae in both her legs, Aimee had both her legs amputated just below her knees on her first birthday. This gave her the chance to walk with two prosthetic legs and have an athletic childhood. While at University she set her sights on entering the world of competitive sports where she went onto set world records in long jump 100m and 200m.
Since then she went on to have her first modelling and film debut, currently starring as Isis in Ancient Evenings. Through her journey in sports, fashion and film she has become one of the most influential women in modern society.
5. Cecilia Camellini
Cecillia, the Italian Paralympian, was born blind. But this didn’t stop her from learning how to swim at the age of three. Once she was pushed in, it was clear that swimming was for her. Since 2004 she has gone onto win 28 Italian Championships, holds the world record for 50m and 100m freestyle, three European records and many more.
Since then she has gone on to compete in a number of Italian and major international competitions. She believes that sports is a tool that can help you manage difficult moments in life, as you learn to know yourself better and become part of a group.
So next time you’re looking for some perspective, make sure to check out this list of women who have overcome all odds to achieve their goals.