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Short Synopsis
A sports reporter investigates the training of girls as professional gymnasts and figure skaters, arguing that the pressure to succeed and to look beautiful results in mental and physical harm, from eating disorders to psychological trauma.

Full Synopsis
Welcome to the world of women's gymnastics and figure skating—the real world that happens away from the cameras, at the training camps and in the private lives of these talented teenage competitors. From starvation diets and debilitating injuries to the brutal tactics of tyrannical gymnastics guru Béla Károlyi, Little Girls in Pretty Boxes portrays the horrors endured by girls at the hands of their coaches and sometimes their own families—and is now updated with a new introduction and foreword that address the sexual abuse scandal perpetrated by USA Gymnastics national team doctor, Larry Nassar. This groundbreaking book shows how a longstanding culture of abuse made young gymnasts perfect targets for a sexual predator, and continues to plead for sanity, safety, and an end to our national obsession: winning at any cost.

Little Girls in Pretty Boxes

The Making and Breaking of Elite Gymnasts and Figure Skaters

Author Joan Ryan

Narrated by Jennifer Jill Araya

Publication date Feb 9, 2021

Running time 9 hrs

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