No, Olympic Athletes Aren’t Being Asked to Sleep On ‘Anti-Sex’ Beds

No, Olympic Athletes Aren’t Being Asked to Sleep On ‘Anti-Sex’ Beds
Photo: Akio Kon, Getty Images

If you’ve been following news of the upcoming Olympics games in Tokyo, you’ve undoubtedly seen the… unusual beds that this year’s competitors are expected to sleep on. The white, boxy frames come courtesy of the Japanese company Airweave, which says it created the structures entirely from recycled cardboard in an effort to align with the pro-sustainability message of the 2020 Games.

Long-distance runner and Olympic silver medalist Paul Chelimo tweeted last week that the beds were clearly designed for one thing: discouraging athletes from sleeping together.

“Beds will be able to withstand the weight of a single person to avoid situations beyond sports,” he joked. Pretty soon, outlets like The New York Post and TMZ were using the tweet as evidence that Olympic authorities were looking to create a fool-proof “deterrent for banging.” And the jokes about the incredibly unfuckable bed were going viral on Twitter.

The only problem? Nothing about these beds is any more “anti-sex” than anything you’d have in the average bedroom. Irish gymnast and Olympic hopeful Rhys McClenaghan posted his own video on Twitter over the weekend, showing off how the Airweave bed was easily able to withstand being vigorously jumped on. The official Olympics account retweeted the short clip, thanking McClenaghan for “debunking the myth.”

Although the beds are clearly suited for all sorts of strenuous, um, “activities,” it’s worth noting that Olympic officials are strongly discouraging them. A handbook for participants staying in the Olympic village says that they should “keep physical interactions with others to a minimum,” — including minimising their handshakes and hugs. This is on top of Olympic authorities already saying it would nix alcohol sales during the games and seriously cut down on the tens of thousands of condoms it typically gives to Olympians every year. We’ll just have to see if these efforts keep any of the athletes from taking these “anti-sex beds” for a test drive.