Amy Purdy's Road to Sochi
Meet Amy Purdy
Snowboarder Amy Purdy, a double beneath-the-knee amputee, leads the charge as the U.S. paralympic snowboarding team makes its debut at the 2014 Winter Paralympic Games in Sochi, Russia.
Amy Purdy grew up in Nevada and got hooked on skiing and, later, snowboarding, on family ski vacations in Utah.
A battle with bacterial meningitis when she was just 19 years old claimed Purdy's kidney, spleen and both legs below the knees.
Outfitted for Prosthetics
She wears custom carbon fiber prosthetic legs and feet inside traditional snowboard boots, but she says, "There's nothing more dynamic than the human foot when it comes to snowboarding, unfortunately."
Amy Purdy racing to first place at the 2011 New Zealand Winter Games, an International Paralympic Committee Alpine Skiing World Cup event.
Back On Top
Amy Purdy topped the podium at the 2011 New Zealand Winter Games.
She's a CrossFit devotee and also trains on wakeboards, skateboards and mountain bikes. Her organization, Adaptive Action Sports, brought Adaptive Moto X Racing to the X Games.
No Challenges Here
Limited flexion in her prosthetic ankles makes toe-side turns a challenge for Amy Purdy, but when her setup is dialed it's impossible to tell.
Women + Sports
Snowboarders Amy Purdy, Kelly Clark, Elena Hight and Jamie Anderson were among the featured athletes at the espnW Women + Sports Summit in October 2013.
Purdy's sponsors Freedom Innovations Prosthetics and Element Skateboards have partnered with Adaptive Action Sports to host camps for adaptive skateboarders.
Purdy on a recent trip to Africa for a TOMS Shoes donation drop.
At X Games
Adaptive Action Sports brought adaptive snowboarding to the X Games Snowboarder X course in 2011 and 2012. Snowboarder X was not contested in 2013. Its return in 2014 conflicted with an International Paralympic Committee World Cup race, but Purdy says she hopes to bring her sport back to the X Games in 2015.
An Amazing Race
At right: Amy Purdy and her boyfriend and Adaptive Action Sports co-founder, Daniel Gale, reviewing race footage for training purposes. At left: Purdy and Gale competing on CBS's "The Amazing Race."
She stepped up her training regimen after the 2012 International Paralympic Committee announcement that snowboarding would debut at the Paralympics in Sochi. "Game on," she says.
U.S. Paralympic Snowboarding head coach Miah Wheeler says Amy Purdy and other adaptive snowboarders have to exaggerate their movements to handle jumps, rollers and other features on the snowboardcross course.
Prepping for Sochi
The U.S. Paralympic Snowboarding team did a dress rehearsal in their new Burton uniforms during training at Buttermilk in Aspen, Colo., one week before leaving for Sochi.