Costa Rican gymnast, Luciana Alvarado, has paid tribute to the Black Lives Matter movement in her floor routine at the Tokyo Olympics.
The gymnast, who is the first gymnast from Costa Rica to ever qualify for the Olympics, made the tribute at the end of her floor routine yesterday after she choreographed the demonstration into her routine.
Alvarado concluded her floor event by taking a knee, tilting her head back, and thrusting her fist into the air.
It comes after the International Olympic Committee placed restrictions on protests by competitors this year and Alvarado's tribute to the Black Lives Matter movement at the Games has caused a divide in opinions.
Many people took to social media to praise Alvarado's tribute as they wrote: "Very inspiring! Proud of her."
"Freedom everywhere and at any time.. good job Luciana!!!!" said another.
Grande #LucianaAlvarado! 🇨🇷#blacklivesmatter pic.twitter.com/oWJr4LMRRS
— Silvia Rojas Soto (@silrojas14) July 25, 2021
But, while some praised her, others questioned her move.
"When did the #Olympics become the stage for #Political Statements? While I appreciate her position, she's there to represent her country or am I wrong and things have changed? #athletes only represent themselves now?" one person asked.
"Sad that Olympics have lowered themselves to this level," said another.
The tribute is said to have been a deliberate decision by the eighteen-year-old, The Associated Press reports.
She also told the Associated Press that she wanted to highlight equality and treating others with respect and dignity "because we're all the same and we're all beautiful and amazing."
"My cousin and I, we both do it in our routines," she said.
"And I feel like if you do something that brings everyone together, you know, and you see that here, like 'Yes, you're one of mine, you understand things', the importance of everyone treated with respect and dignity and everyone having the same rights because we're all the same and we're all beautiful and amazing so I think that's why I love to have it in my routine and I love that my little cousin does it on her routine too."
Alvarado is unlikely to face any punishment for her tribute as it was part of her choreographed routine, CBS News reported.