She did not break any rules, but Sarah Voss’s full-body suit this week at the European Artistic Gymnastics Championships defied convention.
Until now women and girls have only covered their legs in international competition for religious reasons.
Voss, from Germany, said she was proud of her decision and she was supported by her country’s gymnastics federation.
Two team-mates then did the same on Friday, wearing full-body suits during the women’s all-around final.
The German federation (DTB) said its gymnasts performing in the Swiss city of Basel were taking a stand against “sexualisation in gymnastics”, adding that the issue had become all the more important to prevent sexual abuse.
“We hope gymnasts uncomfortable in the usual outfits will feel emboldened to follow our example,” said Voss.
Kim Bui had initially performed in a conventional leotard on Wednesday but said they had wanted to set an example as a team. Elisabeth Seitz said earlier that it was one less thing to worry about, as there was no risk of revealing anything by accident…
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