The United States women's gymnastics team will not be staying at the Olympic Village during the upcoming Games. Instead, the squad will stay in a nearby hotel. Cecile Landi, the coach of Simone Biles and Jordan Chiles, wrote on Twitter that the reason behind the decision is safety for the coaches and athletes.
"It was also a decision that we all made together," Landi wrote. "We know it isn't ideal during a pandemic. We feel like we can control the athletes and our safety better in a hotel setting!"
It was also a decision that we all made together, we know it isn’t ideal for the Olympic experience but nothing is ideal during a pandemic 😢we feel like we can control the athletes and our safety better in a hotel setting!— Cecile Landi (@CLcecile) July 19, 2021
After Landi wrote the tweet, USA Gymnastics said staying at a hotel -- rather than the Olympic Village -- was always the plan.
This all comes after a member of the team, alternate Kara Eaker, tested positive for COVID-19. Eaker and alternate Leanne Wong have been put in quarantine. Eaker is not the only person in Tokyo for the Games who has tested positive. A nonathlete tested positive on Saturday, two athletes staying in the village tested positive on Sunday and two more athletes tested positive on Tuesday.
Tokyo is currently in a state of emergency -- which will last until after the Games -- in hopes of slowing the COVID-19 infection rate. The Olympic Village is big enough for the 11,000 athletes participating in the Games and, in theory, is a bubble. However, the recent positive COVID-19 tests has complicated matters.