The Rio 2016 Olympic Games concluded after a two-week battle between more than 10,000 athletes for medals, records, and personal bests. Both men and women performed amazing feats, breaking 27 world records in Rio.
However, several articles pointed out how the media praised male Olympians for their athletic prowess and highlighted female Olympians for their relationships, families, and age. Regardless of their personal lives and marital status, women in the Olympics accomplished incredible, empowering triumphs.
Here are some of the Rio 2016 moments that make us celebrate how strong women can be!
- U.S. gymnast Simone Biles was an unstoppable force, winning gold in the women’s all-around gymnastics competition. Bringing her teammate, Aly Raisman, to celebrate their victories on the Olympic pedestal elicited tears and applause.
- U.S. swimmer Simone Manuel made history when she became the first black woman to win an Olympic medal in an individual swimming event. Manuel tied with Canadian Penny Oleksiak in the 100 meter freestyle.
- Sarah Robles won the bronze and earned the U.S. their first Olympic medal since 2000 in weightlifting in the women’s over-75-kilogram category.
- Katie Ledecky dominated the pool for the U.S., blowing everyone’s minds with her world record-setting 800-meter freestyle race. She won her fourth gold medal of the Rio games and glided past her competition with an impressive 11-second lead.
- The International Olympic Committee only introduced women’s wrestling 12 years ago in 2004. Helen Maroulis snatched the U.S.A.’s first Olympic gold medal, clutching her hands in joy when seeing her victory.
- Reflecting the growing culture of acceptance, Ibtihaj Muhammad boldly became the first woman to compete for the U.S. in the Olympics wearing a hijab.
- Monica Puig became Puerto Rico’s hero, winning their first Olympic gold medal by defeating Angelique Kerber of Germany in women’s singles tennis.
- Kristin Armstrong showed just how far a woman’s body can be pushed. After riding through rain and enduring a nose bleed in the midst of her gold medal-winning cycling race, she collapsed past the finish line. Armstrong’s 5-year-old son ran into her embrace to celebrate her win.