Former Russian basketball player Ekaterina Lisina, who proudly holds the Guinness World Record for having the longest female legs, didn’t wait long after retiring from sport before she embarked on a successful modeling career.

The 31-year-old stands 6 feet 8 inches tall, making her the tallest model in the world.

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Lisina started playing basketball in her home city of Penza, and realized quite quickly that her incredible height gave her an essential advantage over the rest of her opponents.

God blessed me with a fabulous height so that I can reach the stars,” she said.

When I was 16 I was already 6 foot 6 inches. I played basketball professionally since I was 15,” the former athlete added.

Lisina’s talent didn’t go unnoticed by sports agents and at the age of 19 she was signed with Russia’s top basketball club, CSKA.

In 2006, she won her first international medal together with the Russian squad, finishing second at the World Cup in Germany. Two years later, Lisina took bronze at the summer Olympics in Beijing, China.

After finishing her rather fruitful sporting career, Lisina decided to swap her basketball jersey for high heels, soon becoming one of the most in-demand models in the fashion industry.

I only really realized I was attractive when I was about 24 years old,” she said. “I always had an athletic body and was always much taller than everyone else my age, but then I realized that being tall is very attractive.”

Along with runway appearances, the long-legged brunette has frequently appeared on the covers of fashion magazines, becoming one of the most recognized models in Russia.