A Mom and Accomplished Athlete Without Arms Proves That We All Can Defy the Impossible
Meet Dejana Backo, an artist and athlete who has overcome challenges and found success in the world of art and sports. With a strong message of self-discovery and empowerment, Backo is using her platform to raise awareness about disability-related issues and inspire others. However, a new chapter has begun for Backo, as she recently became a mother, leading her to take a break from the things she loves the most.
She embraces her body the way it is.
Dejana Backo, a renowned Serbian artist and athlete, was born on December 9, 1994, in Novi Sad. Despite being born without upper extremities, she has never let that hinder her life. Her inspiring journey of self-discovery led her to become an accomplished artist and athlete.
As a kid, Backo used to ask her mother why she was born without arms. But as she grew older, she came to realize that her disability did not define her or limit her ability to lead a fulfilling existence. Her zest for life extends to her personal life as well. She is deeply in love with her partner, a fitness instructor, and together, they enjoy exploring new places and sharing their adventures on social media.
Backo joined the Society of Mouth and Foot Painters at the young age of 9, which motivated her to pursue her art even more. She graduated from the Design Art School in 2014 and later enrolled in the Academy of Fine Arts in Novi Sad. Over the years, Backo has held solo exhibitions in nearly 20 cities across different countries around the Balkans.
Also known as the “girl with wings,” she has become a symbol of empowerment and perseverance in Serbia. Despite being born without arms, Backo has soared to new heights and achieved remarkable success in sports. Her impressive achievements include being a world champion in para taekwondo, a historic first for Serbia, which she won at the World Para Taekwondo Championship in Turkey in 2019.
And she’ll soon fly from athletics to motherhood.
In February 2023, Dejana Backo reached another significant milestone in her life by giving birth to her first child. To prepare for this momentous occasion, she decided to take a break from competing, which meant missing out on the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games. However, even though she won’t be competing for a while, she is still actively spreading her message on social media.
Backo has always had a passion for art, but her interest in sports is relatively stronger. She was driven to switch to sports because she wanted to compete in the Paralympic Games. Back in 2016, Backo started practicing Para taekwondo, and she was able to win the K41 women’s −47 kg division. Way to go, Backo!
“We all have some difficulties as people with disabilities,” the athlete explained, candidly. “But if you have a good picture of yourself, if you know who you are and what your worth is and you act within that, you can pass all the negatives and focus on the positives.”
Backo acknowledges that having a baby will impact her sports career. She plans to take a break before starting her training again, which may affect her athletic performance. However, the mom is confident that she will be able to overcome any obstacles that come her way.
Dejana Backo continues to use her platform to raise awareness and inspire others. Despite taking a break from competing, she is still actively engaging with her followers on social media. Her Instagram page is filled with inspiring stories, tips, and motivational messages that encourage people to overcome their challenges. Check out these articles too before you go: