A woman said she was assaulted by a man in a swimming pool after she repeatedly caught him.
London-based sports psychiatrist Dr Josie Perry said she was caught doing laps at Chiswick swimming pool in west London on Monday morning.
Perry said she safely passed a man every few laps before the attack.
But the man suddenly grabbed her feet while she was still underwater during a tumble.
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She said: “My feet were caught and I couldn’t come up to the surface to breathe.
“Obviously, as you turn around you are desperately waiting for that breath, so I was really freaked out.”
Perry, who has a spinal disability and wears a float to help him swim, said the assistant also shot during the ordeal.
She said when she resurfaced the man started chatting with her about how she was passing him, saying she was being ridiculous, that he was faster and even challenged her to to beat him.
The sports psychiatrist left the pool and complained to the manager before reporting the incident to the Metropolitan Police.
Sharing her story on Twitter, she said: “Assaulted in the pool this morning for overcoming a fragile male ego.
“He grabbed my feet and held me under the water. Then starts screaming. Lifeguards are lovely, but of course I’m the one who has to go because I can’t risk swimming with a man. aggressive much stronger than me. “
Perry said she had trouble sleeping on Monday night following the incident.
She also said she was now nervous to cross paths with him again and had to use “every ounce of courage” to get back into the pool on Tuesday morning.
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She said: “I guess because I’m a psychologist I did all the right things, talked to people and it was okay, but it took me until two o’clock this morning to fall asleep. .
“Every time I closed my eyes I felt like I was underwater again. I got really upset about this this morning.
“I had to muster every ounce of courage to get back to the pool today and get in the water,” she added. “We shouldn’t have to go through this. “
“I noticed when I was swimming this morning I got too close to a guy in front and suddenly I hold back and slow down and suddenly I’m not going to overtake because I don’t want to risk his anger if I upset him.
Perry told Yahoo News that what bothered her the most was the number of women who shared similar stories with her.
The sports psychiatrist said: “It’s not that unusual. Rarely does a week go by without one of my girlfriends telling the story of a man who ran after them or rode a bike uphill and someone sat down and fished them out or got annoyed when they passed them. “
“And then there are the stories I got after sharing mine on Twitter – hundreds of stories of women who had the same thing and didn’t go back to the pool, didn’t get the felt like they could point it out and wondered if it was their fault they wore too revealing swimsuits – all that sort of thing. “
“It’s very normal, which is really sad and upsetting. Everyone has their own version of it.”
Perry said these types of incidents should be reported every time they are seen and that swimming pools should have a no-tolerance policy towards them as well.
“The police should also follow up on this type of action and women should feel able to talk about it,” she added.
“If he’s held to account and someone needs to think about doing it, we don’t have to live our lives with a threatening mindset looking for something that might harm us. “
Yahoo News has contacted the Met Police for comment.
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