Body art out in full force in Tokyo


THE Tokyo Games is entering into the second week and the five-ring logo is everywhere to be seen.

No, it’s not only on the flags or signages but the tattoo on the skin of countless athletes competing in Tokyo.

It has become a rite of passage for many athletes with Olympic experience to get the five rings synonymous with the Games embossed on their body in some form.

For an athlete, just getting to the Olympics is often a lifelong quest and one needs to dedicate years of training to hone their craft to reach this goal.

World No. 1 ranked recurve archer Brady Ellison got into the tattoos fad following the 2008 Beijing Olympics where he got silver in the team event.

He has the five Olympic rings displayed on the outside of his right forearm and also a Bible verse “The horse is prepared for the day of battle, but victory belongs to the Lord.”

It’s also to signify his quest to win the gold after striking silver and bronze in previous appearances.

“It’s one of the things you see all the cooler Olympians having. I feel like the Olympic rings is the one tattoo that only we can get,” said Ellison, who is shooting for a place in the quarter-finals today.

And of the many tattoos on parade, none is more striking than Britain’s breaststroke star Adam Peaty’s (pic) lion image on his left arm.

Peaty got the tattoo after the Rio de Janeiro Games, where he bagged Britain’s first gold medal by twice breaking his own world record in the men’s 100m breaststroke event.

“This tattoo represents not fearing who I am up against,” said Peaty, who holds the top 20 fastest times in 100m breaststroke history.

American swimming superstar Caeleb Dressel also deserves a gold medal for his striking tattoos.

Dressel, who had won two gold medals in Tokyo, has a fullly inked left arm.

There is an alligator, a black bear and the American flag on his left arm. And not forgetting the Olympic rings adorning his right arm.

“I was born and grew up in Florida, so this made sense. I swim for a living as well,” said Dressel, explaining his alligator tattoo.

Malaysian swimmers like Welson Sim, Siow Yi Ying and Leung Chii Lin also have tattoos on their bodies after gracing the Olympic stage.

Golfer Gavin Green also had the iconic rings on his arm to commemorate his debut in Rio.

“The road to Rio was very memorable indeed. As I only turned pro in 2015, I had only about a year to go for it. It was a short time but I am very happy I managed to do so. Frankly, it wasn’t on my radar at all in the beginning.

“I wanted to have something to remind me of all the hard work,” said Gavin.

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