Athletes helpline receives more than 120 calls since July launch

A gymnast's hands on the horizontal bars
The helpline is staffed by trained counsellors from the NSPCC charity

More than 120 calls have been made to a support helpline for athletes in just over five weeks since it was launched amid ongoing allegations of abuse within British gymnastics.

The free and confidential helpline, set up by the British Athletes Commission and the NSPCC, launched on 20 July.

Several gymnasts, including Olympians, have recently alleged there has been a culture of mistreatment in the sport.

The Whyte Review, an independent review into the allegations, is under way.

Louise Exton, head of the NSPCC helpline service, said: "It is incredibly important that so many gymnasts, parents and people involved in the sport at all levels have come forward to talk about their experiences of abuse and mistreatment in gymnastics.

"We've heard claims about gymnasts being physically punished or emotionally abused by being relentlessly called lazy or inadequate, or being forced to remain at an unhealthy weight.

"This is unacceptable and we encourage anyone with similar concerns to contact our joint helpline with the BAC to report abuse, seek advice or make a statement into the Whyte Review that was launched this week."

The helpline is available from 08:00 to 20:00, UK time, on weekdays and 09:00 to 18:00 on weekends, and can be contacted on 0800 056 0566.

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