World Champion Olympic Wrestler

Adeline Gray

Hear Adeline's story below

ABOUT ADELINE

We’re taught that you’re not supposed to lose to a girl because you can’t play like a girl. I play like a girl and I win.

The first time a boy refused to wrestle me was when I was a kid. I really didn’t understand it. Why don’t you have the respect to step on the mat with me?

What we as athletes are trying to do when we step on the mat is be treated as athletes. I’ve put in the time, I’ve put in the work as an athlete to step on the mat and have the right to compete.

I beat another athlete and it just happened to be a boy. I was better than he was.

I don’t think tough should be a non-feminine word. I am strong and confident and beautiful when I step on the mat.

You can be a world champion and an elite athlete and still be a female. Girls should be able to work hard and have a passion for something and have that – be beautiful and successful.

I will be an Olympic champion next year. Young girls can have that dream. A lot of times we just need to be told that it’s OK to be a girl and be really good at something.

The man that loves me, loves me because I am ambitious. As far as the sacrifices, I mean those come with my job and he understands that and respects that. And it is so awesome to have him really take the back seat in allowing my dreams to be the main focus of our relationship.

Women wrestling is one of the fastest growing sports in the United States today. We are part of Team USA and we go out there and we compete. We’re trying to represent our country and commit our lives to being the best in the world. And that’s something that’s very special, and not easy to do.

Wrestling teaches you so much about yourself and it teaches you strength and character, and just determination to really get through whatever life throws at you. As a female, it can give me power.

DETAILS

Born: 01/15/1991
Height: 5-10
College: DeVry, Univ. of Colorado-Colorado Springs
High School: Bear Creek H.S. (Lakewood, Colo.)

  • 2014-15 Team USA Ranking: No. 1 at 75 kg
  • Years on Team USA: 5 (2009-10, 2011-15)
  • Residence: Colorado Springs, Colo.
  • Club: New York AC
  • Coach: Erin Vandiver and Terry Steiner

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THE ATHLETES

Meet the athletes that are challenging convention

Adeline Gray

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Tamyra Mensah

Whitney Conder

Jessica Medina

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