J’can gymnast sides with German team in sports uniform debate

Jamaican gymnast Danusia Francis on Monday (July 27) added her voice to the current  debate on sports uniforms  worn by female athletes.

The debate stems from Germany’s female gymnastics team going against the grain when they wore full body suits, instead of the customary leotards.

According to the German Gymnastics Federation, the move was aimed at taking a stance against sexualization in the sport.  

Speaking with the BBC, Francis said what athletes wore should ultimately be a matter of choice and comfort.

“Female outfits in sports aren’t actually designed to help us in any way. It’s kind of just to parade our femininity or lack of a better word but I think it needs to start being what we’re comfortable in and what we are going to perform best in” she said.

She highlighted that she didn’t know there was a choice in wearing body suits.

 “I wasn’t even aware that you could wear them. Obviously now kind of having looked into it, they have been worm here and there by some gymnasts but I think the German gymnasts were the most high profile gymnasts to bring them to a sort of international stage” she added, lauding the Germans on the move which has made others aware that they have a choice.

However, Francis noted that she probably wouldn’t go for a full body suit.

“I probably wouldn’t go for a full legging one because in a lot of our skills we have to hold on to our legs so I just would think that it would make my hands slip or something like that” she said .

Francis shared that going forward, she might consider switching up her choice of clothing.