To stand the test of time and prove oneself in terms of longevity and stamina is vital for leaving a mark in the field of sports. Extreme physical endurance is required through all the pains and aches that are part and parcel of competitive sports. This is exactly what Leema Arokiya Selvi strives to achieve. A pole-vaulter from rural Tamil Nadu, she has come to the city to train with better facilities and opportunities.
She has taken part in various tournaments across all levels since her school days. Her sole purpose of being in Sports is to achieve and be someone her juniors look up to. This determination stems from coming from a small town and dreaming of making it big in the Sporting world.
“It can be become overwhelming at times, thinking about family and knowing that you were missing them. However, your commitment is towards the game.” Through special occasions and festivals, she practices. Twice a day, early morning and late afternoon she goes to the ground to fine tune her skills. “Even when I go back during holidays, I call up my Coach and ask him to suggest exercises that I can do on the ground back home.” That is the extent to which she has dedicated her time in pursuit of the elusive glory in Sports.
Recently, she suffered an injury in her leg. The excruciating pain combined with the fear of the possibility that she may not be able to regain her form, got to her.
“I broke down. The first thought that came to my mind was whether I will be able to compete again. I wept and poured my heart out to my physiotherapist who assured me that I could regain my strength if I rested well.” During those testing times, she looked towards her seniors who were her pillars of support and source of motivation. “They assured me that I will be able to participate again if I set my mind towards it,” she recalls with positivity.
It is for this specific reason that she wants to set an example. So that one day, her juniors can look towards her for inspiration, just like how she had towards her seniors. “The biggest encouragement comes from my parents. Even when I was injured, they didn’t tell me to quit and come back. Many parents of girls are worried about their daughter’s future post injuries. When most other parents would have barred their children from competing further, mine told me to do what I felt needed to de done,” so she says feeling fortunate and grateful to have been blessed with such supportive parents.
Hers’ is a story of resilience and hope, through uncertain and testing times. She vows to be always involved in the field not come back stronger from her injury.
“I will get better and will come back stronger than before,” is her affirmation about the future. May the odds be forever in her favour!