breastfeeding moms and the Tokyo olympics

If you’ve been paying attention to sports headlines, you probably heard that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) recently changed its stance on athletes bringing their breastfeeding infants to Tokyo. (Woohoo!)

Breastfeeding Athletes Can Bring Their Babies to Tokyo

“We very much welcome the fact that so many mothers are able to continue to compete at the highest level, including at the Olympic Games. We are very pleased to hear that the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee has found a special solution regarding the entry to Japan for mothers who are breastfeeding and their young children,” the IOC said in a statement, reported by the Associated Press.

The win is attributed to several athletes and advocates speaking out against the policy that would have separated moms and babies. And it’s a huge relief for lactating athletes who are now able to finish training and focus on performing their best, without worrying about how to get their milk home. (For the breastfeeding coaches and support staff, MilkStork is working to ensure expressed milk is shipped safely to little ones stateside.)

&Mother Supports Moms In Sports

&Mother is one of the outspoken advocates. The organization is on a mission to rebuild the working world to support mothers—starting with sports. They have committed to financially supporting mothers as they compete in Tokyo this summer, in Beijing for the Winter Olympics, and beyond.

“There are invisible barriers that women face when it comes to pursuing and thriving in both career and motherhood,” says Alysia Montano, &Mother cofounder and former Olympian. “Starting in Sports, we can make these barriers visible, set an example for how to overcome them, and make progress towards a world that values and elevates working mothers.”

Those of us cheering from home can support these athletes, too, by donating to &Mother, and by speaking up at the office and buying goods and services from companies that champion moms in the workplace.

5 Athletes (& Moms!) to Watch at the Summer Olympics

Ready to root for the red, white, and blue? Here are five top US athletes (and mothers!) to watch this summer:

1. Alex Morgan 

This is Alex Morgan’s third Olympic games as a US Soccer player, and her first as a mom.

2. Aliphine Tuliamuk 

The elite long-distance runner will be competing in the marathon less than seven months after giving birth to her daughter.

3. Allyson Felix 

With nine Olympic medals to her name, this will be Allyson Felix’s fifth appearance on an Olympic track. Felix is also a member of the board of directors for &Mother.

4. Foluke Gunderson 

The Games in Tokyo will be this new mom’s third appearance on the Olympic volleyball court.

5. Skylar Diggins-Smith 

After playing the 2018 WNBA season while pregnant, Skylar Diggins-Smith will make her Olympic basketball debut this summer.

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