Because I thought it was the sport that was so unhealthy. It's the people that are in the sport," Dominique Dawes told Newsy. Decades after hanging up her leotard, three-time Olympic gymnast and four-time gold medalist Dominique Dawes is back in the gym, but not in the way you may think.
This time her name is on the building, an accomplishment she says comes with great responsibility. Dawes opened this facility in the aftermath of the abuse revelations and subsequent coverups of convicted sex offender Larry Nassar, a man Dawes says was her doctor for nearly a decade as a young athlete.
She says the culture at the time provided coverage for Nassar. She says the industry needed an overhaul, and the best place to start is where it all begins: in the gym.
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Right now, she's focusing on recreational gymnastics and ninja training with hopes of moving to a competitive team in the future. That is pretty common, if you're training in the elite level.
That's not going to happen here. In recent years, Olympians are bucking a world where athletes were often told to power through their emotions and are opening up more and more about mental health.
In some cases setting their own boundaries. Naomi Osaka withdrew from the French Open to focus on her mental health. Dawes says she applauds their courage and is doing her part here at the gym and encouraging parents to look for the s of trauma. They're crying many times walking in the gym; they're stoic, they're not smiling. They're not enjoying their childhood, they leave crying, they leave in fear, and then you bring them back in fear.
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That's a problem. It's not worth it. It's not worth the long-term effects that it's going to leave on your young daughter or your young son. Take them out, find a healthier gym, find a healthier environment," Dawes advised. This story originally reported by Amber Strong on Newsy.
Actions Facebook Tweet. Push for perfection; the mental pressure of elite sports. By: Newsy Staff.
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