Breen left speechless after being told sprint briefs were ‘too short’


ritish Paralympian Olivia Breen says she was left “speechless” after being told by an official at the English Championships that her sprint briefs were “too short and inappropriate”.

The double world champion and 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medalist said the remark was made shortly after she finished competing in the long jump competition in Bedford on Sunday evening.

In a post on social media, Welsh athlete Breen – who will be competing at this summer’s Paralympic Games in Tokyo – said she had been competing in the same Adidas shorts for several years and added that the incident had made her question “whether a male competitor would be similarly criticised”.

The 24-year-old – who has cerebral palsy – said that women should “not be made to feel self-conscious about what they are wearing when competing”.

On Twitter, Breen wrote: “I am always grateful for the incredible volunteers who officiate at athletics events.

“They do an amazing job and make it possible for us to compete. However, tonight I feel disappointed because just as I finished my long jump competition one of the female officials felt it necessary to inform me that my sprint briefs were too short and inappropriate. I was left speechless.

“I have been wearing the same sprint style briefs for many years and they are specifically designed for competing in. I will hopefully be wearing them in Tokyo. It made me question whether a male competitor would be similarly criticised.

“I hope no other female athletes had similar issues. I recognise that there needs to be regulations and guidelines in relation to competition kit but women should not be made to feel self-conscious about what they are wearing when competing but should feel comfortable and at ease.”

“I’ve worn them for nine years, I’ve never had a problem and we should feel comfortable with what we wear.

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