Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas saw unprecedented success at this year’s Summer Olympics, becoming the first African American to win the individual all-around competition, and the first American to win both the individual and team competition.
But Gabby didn’t always feel at home at the gym.
In her upcoming interview with Oprah, Gabby opens up about the bullying and racism she experienced while training at a gym in Virginia. A fewllow gymnast routinely referred to Douglas as her “slave.”
“But it hasn’t been an easy road. Douglas opened up about her time training at a gym in Virginia, where she was met with racism and ridicule. She told a story how at one point she was actually referred to by another gymnast as their ‘slave.’
‘I definitely felt isolated. I felt, why am I deserving this?’ she said. ‘Is it because I’m black? Like, those thoughts would go through my mind.’
Douglas felt so unwelcome in Virginia that she moved to the gym in Iowa where she blossomed into the gold medalist who wowed the world in London.”
Check out a clip from the interview below: