Nothing can stand in their way. Here are the gymnasts who continued competing after becoming a mother.

Suzanne Harmes with her son

Suzanne Harmes

Harmes was an elite Dutch gymnast who is best known for winning the silver medal on floor exercise at 2005 European championships and a bronze medal on the same event at the 2005 World championships.

Harmes announced her pregnancy just before the 2006 World championships. She gave birth to a son called Lugano. After eight months of giving birth, she regained her former level. She competed at 2008 European championships where she finished last with her team. She was the only female gymnast to represent Netherlands at 2004 and 2008 Olympics.

At 170 cm, Harmes was one of the tallest artistic gymnasts. In 2011, she announced her retirement.

Leyanet González

Gonzalez is a former Cuban gymnast who represented her country at 2004 Olympic games where she finished in 22nd. She is two time Pan American Games champion, she won the first gold on balance beam in 1991 and the second one on vault in 2003.

She has one eponymous skill, an uneven bars mount. It involves a round-off back handspring onto the low bar through a handstand position.

Larisa Latynina

Latynina is the most successful Olympic gymnast. For 48 years, she held the record for winning more Olympic medals than any other athlete before being topped by US swimmer Michael Phelps in 2012. 

She is one of the few gymnasts who achieved the rare feat of winning the all around title at European championships, World championships and Olympic games.

She won her first World all around title (in 1958) while being four months pregnant with her daughter Tatyana. She kept her pregnancy a secret even from her coach.

Latynina returned to competition after seven months of giving birth. She retired in 1966 after the World championships and became a coach.

Oksana Chusovitina

Chusovitina is currently the oldest competitive elite gymnast. She has competed under three flags Soviet Union, Uzbekistan, and Germany.

She is the only female gymnast ever to compete in seven Olympic Games and holds the record for the most individual world championships medals on a single event (nine, on the vault).

Oksana who is married to Olympic wrestler Bakhodir Kurbanov, gave birth to a son called Alisher in 1999. Alisher was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia five years after his birth. With the prize money she earned from gymnastics competition and money donated to the cause, Oksana was able to get treatment for her son.

Written by Gigi Farid



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