LONDON (Reuters) – British gymnast Amy Tinkler said on Wednesday that her Olympic bronze medal was not worth the abuse she had to endure throughout her career.
The 20-year-old, who announced her retirement in January, was a surprise medallist in the floor exercise at the 2016 Rio Games.
Tinkler and others have since spoken out about their experiences with British Gymnastics, accusing coaches of bullying and “body shaming”.
British Gymnastics has opened an independent review and said the allegations are being investigated.
“The medal wasn’t worth it,” Tinkler told the Daily Mail newspaper. “I would give up my whole Olympic experience to have never gone through this, and for any other gymnast to not (experience it).
“Nothing is worth what I have been through and what I am still dealing with.”
Tinkler, who was 16 at the Rio Olympics and the youngest member of Britain’s gymnastics team, submitted a formal complaint to the governing body in November 2019 and said in July she had yet to receive feedback.
In a separate interview with broadcaster ITV, Tinkler said she was still getting professional counselling but was ready to move on with her life and hoping to bring about change through speaking out.
“All I want to do is protect the next generation of gymnasts coming up and gymnasts should ever have to go through what myself and the other gymnasts have had to go through,” she said.
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Ed Osmond)