When Gracie Gold, the leading lady of US Figure skating, candidly made that statement in front of scads of reporters after a disappointing Skate America competition, many of the reporters were left confused, even alarmed, that Gold saw herself as an overweight figure skater. Gold later announced that she would be taking the Olympic season off to seek treatment for mental health issues, including an eating disorder.

Gold openly shared her struggles with the world. This is not something that has really happened before in elite level skating. Figure skaters are seen as ice royalty, receiving media training from a young age to properly respond to questions in a vague, but kind way. Her honesty lifted the veil on an issue that has silently plagued the sport for many years. While there are no clear statistics on eating disorders in figure skating, former American skater Jenny Kirk estimates that 85% of skaters have suffered, or are suffering from various forms of …

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