'Anti-sex' beds made of cardboard provided to athletes at the Tokyo Games village are 'sturdy,' organisers reassured on Monday after a report surfaced in the New York Post claiming the beds were deliberately flimsy to promote social distancing. This had triggered a plethora of hilarious reactions online, with netizens calling them 'bizarre.'
Irish gymnast Rhys McClenaghan posted a video on Twitter, filming himself repeatedly jumping on a bed and said, "The beds are meant to be anti-sex. They're made out of cardboard, yes, but apparently, they're meant to break with sudden movements. It's fake - fake news!" The official account of Olympics Twitter thanked McLenaghan for "debunking the myth", adding "the sustainable beds are sturdy!"
The report was based on a tweet by US distance runner Paul Chelimo, who said the cardboard beds were "aimed at avoiding intimacy among athletes." He added the beds would be able to withstand the weight of a single person to avoid situations beyond sports.
This is not the first time the beds have come into question. In January, manufacturer Airweave said they can withstand a weight of 200 kilos and have been through rigorous stress tests after Australian basketball player Andrew Bogut questioned their durability. Post the game, the beds will be recycled into paper products.
"We've conducted experiments, like dropping weights on top of the beds," a spokesperson told AFP. "As long as they stick to just two people in the bed, they should be strong enough to support the load."
The pandemic-delayed 2020 Tokyo Games, which starts on Friday, will see thousands of athletes participating and staying at the Olympic Village.
Furthermore, despite warnings to "avoid unnecessary forms of physical contact", the organising committee is expected to hand out 160,000 condoms, which are not meant for use but are supposed to be "brought back by athletes to their respective home countries and to help them support the campaign to raise awareness (about HIV/AIDS)", organisers told AFP.
(Edited by Rupashree Ravi)
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