Tucked away in the beautiful valleys of Narayanapuram of Andhra Pradesh, we find the inspiring story of Vijaya Lakshmi. At an age where people start to think about retirement and taking life easy, this amazing woman has started a new chapter of her life. Keep on reading to find out how she registered 7 world records in her name!
Looks Can Deceive
Vijaya Lakshmi seems like your everyday woman. She is a mother. She cooks, takes care of the house, is a great spouse and just about does the duties of every average Indian woman. However, looks can deceive, she has an amazing story to tell about her hobby. Vijaya Lakshmi is a Rappeler!
How Did It Begin?
After the death of her husband, Vijaya Lakshmi started working for an adventure club. She says, “My life was aimless. I was living without an aim.” She further adds that in her adventure club, after seeing other people rappel, her ‘inner rappeler’ awakened! And through this, at the age where people normally think about having an easy retirement, Vijaya Lakshmi’s story truly began with a new chapter.
So this strong woman started out her new-found story. She set a goal for her dangerous sport and set out to begin work towards it. The founder of the adventure club, K. Rangarao provided her with much encouragement and power. This helped her support her goal. He states, “People usually have a fear of heights. When they stand on top of a tall place and look down, they are scared.” He then proudly adds, “But that is for normal people. Vijaya Lakshmi did not have that fear.” The founder goes on to say that Rappeler Amma has set her mind and works tirelessly on it and gives it her 100%.
Rappeler Amma’s Feats
At 420 ft, overlooking a rushing waterfall, the 54-year-old Vijaya Lakshmi has set herself for rappelling. The conditions look difficult. The cold water numbs her brain and the soft algae on the rocks slip her legs and balance. Furthermore, the rope is wet, there is a little grip. Even the slight misstep can cause fatal injuries. But even as all of this is stacked against her, she is unfazed. And just like that, with perseverance and self-confidence and strength, Vijaya Lakshmi becomes the first woman to rappel down this 420 ft Katika waterfall! It’s almost like rappelling down the Pyramid of Giza (480 ft.). But wait! This didn’t quench her raging fire for achievement just yet. She had even more to accomplish.
Her next goal was to rappel down the same waterfall. But this time with a twist. She wanted to do it blindfolded! It’s important to know that only the right guesses will help you rappel down safely, and that, being blindfold. The chances of failure here will lead to fatal consequences. But Vijaya Lakshmi did not waver. With only her trainer’s instructions being told to her, she has to make history. And sure enough, she did! The year is 2016, and this brave Rappeler Amma rappelled down the waterfall, blindfolded and made a new world record!
Vijaya Lakshmi proudly says, “Adventure sports has boosted my confidence level. I hope my achievements help boost my children’s confidence too.” And this is why she started cycling. Her laurels do not end at rappelling! Rappeler Amma has cycled 200 kilometers to foster interest for adventure sports among 70,000 students spanning over 80 schools! You can check out a short video about her below.
We think Vijaya Lakshmi at even 54 years, is an inspiration to not just adults her age and older, but also to kids and young adults. She holds 7 rappelling records and motivates kids towards healthy life practices and hygienic lifestyles. What do you think about this wonderful role model? Let us know your opinions in the comments below. Also, check out India’s armless cyclist and his inspiring journey.