Rachel Riley has revealed that she has warned friends not to sign up for Strictly Come Dancing, saying that it can ‘mess with your head’.
The Countdown star previously appeared in the competition back in 2013 and met her now husband Pasha Kovalev after being paired with him on the programme.
Rachel also spoke about the late Caroline Flack, who was paired with Pasha on the series in 2014. Caroline died by suicide in February 2020 at the age of 40.
The 35-year-old told The Times that there isn’t enough awareness of how being a contestant on Strictly can have an impact on your mental health.
‘Caroline Flack’s was such a tragic story; even Pasha struggles to talk about it,’ Rachel said.
‘I would prefer not to [talk about it] apart from to say, I read some of her interviews where she discussed her depression after Strictly and, I agree, it does mess with your head.’
She added: ‘I advise friends not to go on the show and I know people who have dropped out of it due to the mental pressures involved.’
The presenter went on to say that there isn’t ‘enough awareness of the psychological effects it has’.
‘I am a maths geek, not a performer,’ she added, saying: ‘Having 10million viewers sitting in judgment of you, not to mention the actual judges? You need to be very mentally strong not to let that affect your self-worth.’
It comes after Rachel spoke about her behind the scenes experiences on Countdown, saying that she was groped backstage on the Channel 4 show by a male audience member.
The presenter, who’s starred on the show since 2009, said occasionally fans have been out of line with her.
She recalled: ‘This married couple came up to me and the lady said “oh my husband really likes watching you, do you mind if we just…” and he squeezed my a**e.’
Strictly Come Dancing continues tonight at 7.15pm on BBC One.
Credit: Original article published here.