Courage is the first step to success: Dr. Seema Rao

Life will test you but remember this, 

when you walk up a mountain your legs get stronger.

She set a benchmark in the men’s world. Unlike her name suggests ‘boundaries’, Dr. Seema Rao, India’s first and only woman Comando Trainer, has passed all the borders in testing her physical and mental abilities in last 20 years. Recently ranked sixth by the Forbes magazine in woman power trailblazer in India, she will be conferred with India’s highest civilian award for women, Naari Shakti Puraskar 2019, by the President of India on Friday, on the pretext of International Women’s Day.

In an exclusive conversation with Newscrust, Dr. Seema talks of her fears and how she overcame them to achieve her dreams.  

“Whatever I am doing is for my country. I am a daughter of a freedom fighter and this is in my blood. I grew up listening to how he fought against the British, his jail break stories and I found them inspiring,” said Dr. Seema, who is the youngest daughter of freedom fighter Ramakant Sinari. “His stories left an urge in me to contribute in someway to the country,”  she added.

Lesson learnt in school
“When I was a kid, I was frightened of almost everything. I was a studious child, but not daring and outspoken. Then one incident changed my life. A few bully girls lit fire crackers in my classroom that injured a classmate of mine. When an inquiry was set, no one revealed their names because they knew, if they spoke their names out, the girls would make their schooling miserable,” she recalled.

“But I felt keeping quite would encourage them to do  such things in the future and went and revealed their names to the school administration. For a few days, life was normal. But one day, those four girls caught hold of me. Two held me and the other two snatched my bag. They began removing books and journals and tearing them. Exams were around and I knew I did not have time to reading those journals, write them again and then submit them. I felt helpless, physically, because the two girls held me tight. I couldn’t fight them. That was when I decided, to learn marshal arts and be strong,” Dr. Seema said.

Mastering her Skills:

Known as the wonder woman of India, Dr. Seema has shattered the gender barrier to the maximum potential. She overcame her fears by mastering the arts that conquered them.
“I learnt how to fight my fears. I did the mountaineering course to get over the fear of height. To get over hydro-phobia I did the Scuba diving course. This is how I conquered my fears,”  she said.

Today, Dr. Seema is a 7th deg black belt in Unarmed combat and has trained more than 20,000 forces and also the police force of more than 12 states.
“My husband Major Deepak Rao and I have a expertise in training for Close Quarter Battle. It gives training in fighting battles between 30 yards and includes shooting, hunting and other exercises,” she said.  

Odds made no difference.
“Once determined, there is no turning back. Yes, there have been instances of severe injuries during these years, but that did not bother me. Two of them had a terrible impact on me”
“Once, while doing a monkey rope, my rope snapped and I fell around 50 feet. I had a vertebral fracture and took months to recover from them. In the second accident, during a grapple bout, I got upset hearing the news of my father’s demise and fell on the head, suffering a memory loss for several months,”  she recalled.

“But, I had this knack of never giving up. So here I am, still fighting and training,”  she added.

Message for women

“Women are getting strong which makes me feel happy. Courage is the first step to success. Sky is the limit. Dream the impossible. There is no harm in thinking unconventional,”  she believes.

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