As part of the Rainbow Laces campaign, Stonewall has spoken to people who have come out for LGBT people in sport and made amazing progress for inclusion in their communities.
In this interview we talk with Corinne Humphreys, a Team GB sprinter who tells us how she learnt to embrace her true self in sport.
Early on in my career as a sprinter, I was very conscious of how I came across when I ran. I didn’t want to be perceived as ‘overly masculine’ so I consciously took my naturally masculine manner out of my running – and it badly affected my performances.
In the past, as a pretty masculine LGBT woman in sport, I felt like I stood out from the rest of my competitors because I didn’t wear a crop top and short shorts to compete in. It played on my mind. At times, even before I’d run a race, I felt inadequate just because of how I looked compared to the others.
Being part of Rainbow Laces is part of showing how far I’ve come personally and as an athlete.
But I’ve dug deep, embraced who I am and used that self-esteem to drive me on to a successful career. Being part of Rainbow Laces is part of showing how far I’ve come personally and as an athlete.
Being LGBT is as big a part of who someone is as their passion for sport. The LGBT community must embrace that. Don’t be ashamed of who you are. You’ll feel more at ease with yourself - and perform better as a consequence - if you’re truly you.
Now I run as myself and all of the mannerisms and movement that comes with who I really am.