When snowboarding champion Amy Purdy was asked to join ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" for their 18th season last year, she was almost as terrified as she was excited. After losing both of her legs when she contracted bacterial meningitis more than 15 years ago, Purdy was no stranger to overcoming monumental challenges -- and she was also quite comfortable with competitions, having earned a bronze medal in the Winter Paralympics that same year. But "Dancing with the Stars" felt like a new undertaking entirely.
"I was a little scared," Purdy admits to Oprah, in the above video from "Super Soul Sunday." "I have zero dance experience whatsoever."
Yet Purdy's sheer love of music and dancing piqued her interest. "I knew I loved dancing with my friends. I knew I loved music, and I knew that I could feel music. So, I knew I had rhythm," she continues. "I knew I would enjoy it."
So, Purdy agreed to become a contestant.
"I thought, 'Well, it's an experience, and it would be great to go from something like the Paralympics right into something else,'" she says. "But, yeah, once I said yes, I was quite nervous."
Always a competitor, Purdy channeled her nerves into something productive: learning whatever she could about the show, the moves and the dancers. That's when her doubts set in.
"I looked up other dances online and the other dancers," she says. "They moved so quickly -- their bodies moved so gracefully -- that I thought, 'There's no way I'm going to be able to do this.'"
Not only did Purdy rally her confidence and enjoy herself on "Dancing with the Stars," but she also made it all the way to the finale episode, where she and dance partner Derek Hough became that season's runners-up. She talks more about her experience on the show, as well as the life lessons she's learned since her double amputation, in her interview on "Super Soul Sunday," airing Feb. 22 at 11 a.m. ET on OWN.
Also in the interview: Amy describes the near-death experience where she says she actually felt her last heartbeat.