Fu Yuanhui is drawing praise for her honest comments about swimming on her period during the 4x100m Medley.
In an interview following China’s fourth place finish at the event, Yuanhui corrected a reporter who suggested stomach pain caused her to feel ill during the event. Fu said her period started the night before which caused her to feel weak and really tired.
“It’s because my period came yesterday, so I felt particularly tired – but this isn’t an excuse, I still didn’t swim well enough,” she said.
The reporter interviewing Fu responded appropriately. She told the swimmer “Don’t worry! Just make sure you keep up the hard work for next time!” It’s the right message to send.
Fu’s performance was thrown off by something out of her control. But, she shouldn’t be ashamed to admit she was on her period. It’s, unfortunately, taboo to talk about something which could seriously affect women at the Olympics. Good on the Chinese swimmer for openly talking about it and hopefully, encouraging more athletes to do the same.
Fu’s comments have drawn widespread praise. A Sina Weibo user commented Fu is breaking the mold in discussing her discomfort.
“I really admire Fu Yuanhui, for swimming while she was on her period – women can be affected during their periods, especially with period pain,” a user wrote according to the BBC. “She felt guilty for coming fourth, but Fu Yuanhui we’re still very proud of you,” user TAO wrote on Sina Weibo.
The comments are welcome and hopefully open up a further dialogue about something which isn’t talked about at all publicly. Fu has already captured a bronze medal at the Rio 2016, but she captured the hearts of many fans following her honest comments. Well done.