Close-up footage showing a half-naked Marit Bjørgen and other Norwegian cross-country skiers changing has provoked a string of complaints.
German TV channel crew filmed Ms Bjørgen, Therese Johaug and Heidi Weng whilst they were donning dry clothes following Sunday’s FIS Tour de Ski victory in Oberstdorf, Bavaria.
“People should really focus on what is happening with the skiing rather than half-naked women. It’s inappropriate,” she [Bjørgen] said to NRK about the upper torso footage showing them dressed in just a bra, which lasted for several minutes.
Ms Johaug added, “It’s not exactly fun having a camera in your face whilst standing changing. Nevertheless, we are used to stripping off due to sports conditions, so we are not shy. They should have spared us from this, however."
The incident occurred because there was no tent to change in, directly contravening International Olympic Committee (IOC) and FIS regulations. These were passed following similar fiascos at last year’s competition, as well as the 2005 Oberstdorf World Cup, reports say.
Male sports colleagues Niklas Dyrhaug and Eldar Rønning declare, today, they share the female athletes’ concerns, even though it is different for men.
“Each person can react extremely differently when being filmed half-naked. I understand the ladies,” says Tour de Ski newcomer Dyrhaug.
According to NRK, senior cross-country team officials have now lodged a formal with the International Ski Federation (FIS) over the incident. Race director Jürg Capol states, “We don’t wish the girls to be filmed during those moments.”
Professor Inggard Lereim M.D. PhD, vice-chair of FIS Medical Committee (Nordic) present at the Tour de Ski, tells The Foreigner, “People should abide by the regulations. It’s not a medical matter, just about normal behaviour.”