British Olympic freestyle skier Rowan Cheshire has announced her retirement at 24, saying her “body and mind just can’t keep up with the pace”.
A horrific crash before the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics left Cheshire with a broken nose and severe concussion, and unable to compete at the Games.
She finished seventh in the halfpipe at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics.
“I feel so privileged to have spent the last nine years pursuing the crazy sport that I love,” she said.
“But my body and mind just can’t keep up with the pace of it any more and I have enjoyed exploring different avenues this year during my rehabilitation.”
In 2014, Cheshire became the first British skier to win a Freestyle Skiing World Cup halfpipe title, a year after she won her first medal when she took bronze at the World Junior Championships.
Since the 2018 Olympics, Cheshire has spoken openly about the effects her concussion had on her mental health and her love for competitive extreme sport.
“The synergy between your body and mind, particularly when competing in professional sport, has to be seamless,” said Cheshire.
“For me, that has been the most interesting part of this decision – my body might be fit enough now, but is my mind up to the task?”
She added: “Being a part of Team GB at the Winter Olympics was a dream come true and I’m so grateful I was given the opportunity to compete.
“I hope in the future I can inspire people to take up sport, achieve their goals, find their passion and recognise the positive impact physical activity can have on mental health.”