Kowalski joins many other athletes that have decided to not live one foot in the closet, and one foot out of the closet. FGG Australian board member and VP of External Affairs, Kate Rowe has already sent a note of support to Daniel Kowalski.
Proud and Strong, Daniel Kowalski, another Sports Champion
CLICK HERE to read the full story in the Sydney Morning Herald.
We note in particular this passage:
He feels now that he had been in denial about his sexuality during his high-profile career. "Things pop in my head that make me realise that I clearly suppressed these thoughts of being gay … because it was 'wrong', as a male it's 'wrong' but even more as an elite athlete."
And this denial may have affected his competitive edge. "I always knew that I lacked confidence when I stood up on the blocks and I do wonder sometimes if that lack of confidence was fear - fear of not really knowing who I am," he said.
"On the sporting side, I lost to some amazing champions, so I'm not for a second saying that this is the reason I didn't win. I often wonder if the lack of self-confidence and lack of identity in many ways held me back from reaching my potential."
This is precisely the reason the Federation of Gay Games has placed a high priority on raising the issue of the fight against homophobia at the highest levels of sport: the principle of sport for all, and for allowing each athlete to reach his or her full potential, requires a safe and supporting environment for athletes whatever the race, ethnicity, religion... and sexual orientation. Those entities who deprive young athletes of this environment will directly suffer from lowered performance from athletes suffering from homophobia, and from the lack of potentially talented athletes participating in competitive sport.