Amy Tinkler: ‘I’d give up my Olympic medal if I could change what gymnastics has done to me’

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  • ITV News published this video item, entitled “Amy Tinkler: ‘I’d give up my Olympic medal if I could change what gymnastics has done to me'” – below is their description.

    For Amy Tinkler, Britain’s youngest Olympian in Rio who stunned the gymnastics world when she won a bronze medal, it all ended in tears, alone in her room at the national headquarters in Lilleshall. Without telling anyone, she climbed into her car and set off home to escape the sport that had dragged her into such a dark place. Gymnastics had broken her. It was at the end of another day’s training with the British squad where yet again she says she was criticised for her performance, told she needed to lose weight and told she needed to get fitter. That evening on the phone to her mother, she cried constantly for three hours. “My Mam was like Amy, get in your car and come home. She thought it was safer for me to drive home in that state,” she says. “I was in such a dark place then that I think my parents were kind of worried for me. And they just wanted me home.” The saddest indictment of all is that she would happily hand back the bronze medal she won in Rio if that could take away all the pain she endured in her career; body-shaming, emotional abuse and training on injuries. “I would give up that medal to not have gone through what I did, which is really sad,” she says. “Obviously getting an Olympic medal is like not a normal thing. Not many people can say they’ve got an Olympic medal and the fact that I’d just rather not have that, to have gone through what I went to, it’s really sad.”

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