Purdy began snowboarding seven months after she received her leg prosthetics. About a year after her legs were amputated, she came in third place in a snowboarding competition at Mammoth Mountain. Subsequently, she received a grant from the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF), a non-profit organization.
Through this grant, she was able to compete in several snowboarding competitions in the U.S.
In 2003, Purdy was recruited by the CAF as spokesperson. She moved to San Diego to be closer to the CAF headquarters. In San Diego, she continued her pre-amputee profession as a massage therapist. She also got involved in the modeling and acting industry. In February 2003, she played a model in a Madonna music video. Later in 2003, Purdy started working for Freedom Innovations, a prosthetic feet manufacturer, as Amputee Advocate. She has gone on to co-found her own non-profit organization, Adaptive Action Sports, for individuals with physical disabilities who want to get involved in action sports (snowboarding, skateboarding, surfing) or art and music.