British Gymnastics Federation apologizes for abuse allegations

Amy Tinkler won bronze in women's singles at Rio 2016.  Photo: Owen Humphries |  PA - Photo: Owen Humphries |  pan

The president of the British Gymnastics Federation, Mike Darcy, apologized and acknowledged that the organization had “disappointed” its members after 37 former gymnasts condemned the harassment and abuse.

“As we reflect on some of the great moments of the Tokyo Olympics, we must also recognize that with the rapid development of gymnastics over the past decade, our organization has, on many fronts, been able to sustain that growth. failed,” Darcy said in a statement. Tuesday night, the 17th.

“The board of directors took stock in recent months. It is clear that management and the board of directors have not come close enough to understand gymnasts’ concerns, and our partnership with those expressing concerns has not been good enough,” the text continues.

“We let them down and we feel deeply,” said the manager.

The British Federation has been sued by 37 former gymnasts, including three Olympic medalists, who claim they have been subjected to physical and psychological abuse, which they describe as systematic.

Darcy also recognized that the training culture around gymnastics needed to change to ensure a less toxic environment for athletes.

“While we recognize that there are many good practices in sport in the UK, we must make it clear to all members that abusive practices, including injury training, abuse, yelling and questions about weight, are not acceptable,” he said. .

“We have to do better to ensure that there is no room for abuse in our game. We at the British Gymnastics Federation are determined and committed to change and there is no need to wait for internal findings to do so, Darcy says.

For several months, retired and active gymnasts have condemned their training conditions around the world.

In the United States, the Nassar case, a reference to the surname of a former female team doctor sentenced to life in prison for sexually assaulting more than 250 gymnasts, including Olympic medalist Simone Biles, has revealed the hidden face of the sport since 2018. .

In Greece, former gymnasts condemned decades of “torture-like” abuse by their trainers.

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