Podcast: MyKayla Skinner, Adeline Gray discuss why mental health matters

Posted at 12:42 AM, Aug 05, 2021

The Podium

Conversations surrounding athletes' mental health have been more prevalent at these Olympics than ever before.

Champions like Michael Phelps and Naomi Osaka have recently shared how their mental health was affected by the constant pressure they experienced, and Simone Biles' decision to withdraw from gymnastics competitions because her mind and body felt out of sync sparked more discussions on the importance of athletes taking breaks to protect their mental and physical health. Host Lauren Shehadi continues the conversation by speaking with Biles' teammate and friend MyKayla Skinner as well as wrestler Adeline Gray about how they prepared to be in the spotlight. 

Skinner talks about how the American gymnasts handle the weight of high expectations, the ways in which Biles inspires her and the unexpected journey that led to her silver medal on vault. She also tells Shehadi about her plans to start a family and thinks about what she will tell her future children when recounting her gymnastics career. 

Gray explains the "heartbreaking" way her run in Rio ended, the mental challenges of coming back from a physical injury and how she balances wrestling with more social aspects of her life. The silver medalist closes out the episode by describing how she worked on her mental health in the leadup to the 2020 Games, the highest point of her Tokyo experience and the ways other women representing Team USA helped her stay motivated through challenging times. 

You can listen to more from Skinner and Gray on Amazon Music or below:

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