The First Indian Female Sailor Dr. Rohini Rau

In this century of women empowerment we find women taking the lead in all the spheres, starting from being the SEO of a company to the sports arena too. Women athletes are now leading more glory to the nation and making each Indian proud of their women legacy. Keeping this legacy on Dr. Rohini Rau the first Indian female sailor sailed down the oceans with the crowning glory.

This beautiful and talented lady started competing at the young age of 10, when her mother had enrolled her in a summer coaching camp. The coach at the camp encouraged her to compete in a sailing championship in Mumbai. Further after that she went down to with the rest of the team to compete in her first ever national sailing championship competition at 11. It was the first taste of defeat for a young Rohini. Competing with four girls, she secured the last place but her defeat made her work harder towards her impending future victories she had achieved today. Well to be known apart from four international medalsRohini has sailed over nine world championships and has till date won over 30 gold medals. She is an eight-time consecutive national gold medalist in in sailing in the women’s category.

It is just amazing to imagine being in the middle of the ocean all by yourself at age little age of ten years, but the winds of faith and determination stayed behind her sailing her down the ocean. She thanks her mother and has quoted once that. “Sailing has been a part of my system right from the start. My mother, who studied Marine Biology at the University of Portsmouth, UK, was the only one in the family who knew about sailing. When she came to Chennai from Calcutta, she was enthralled by the century old Royal Madras Yacht Club, credited to be the first sailing Club in the South of India. She would take me sailing from the time she was pregnant. So, I was on a boat right from the age of one”.

When she had decided to take up competitive sailing, it was not just the unfavorable winds of the ocean she was up against but also a whole big ocean of naysayers in the society and the world, according to whom women cannot sail. She was up against. But this just made her determination much stronger and at the age of 30 apart from being a renowned national and international champion sailor, she also became a successful doctor, a TED fellow for life and the Founding Curator of the Chennai Hub of Global Shapers Community.

Due to her career as a doctor she had to quite sailing as could not give much time to that but still takes part in projects and also trains small young kids who are aspiring to be sailors, especially women.

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