03/24/2020 18:31 EDT

Athletes From Team Canada Detail Emotional 'Rollercoaster' After 2020 Tokyo Olympics Postponed

Team Canada cited COVID-19 concerns as reason not to send athletes to Japan.

Crystal Emmanuel says athletes were like sitting ducks as they waited to hear what would become of the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games. Amid the looming shadow of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the original July 24 start date was up in the air. 

The International Olympic Committee announced Tuesday the Games would be postponed until 2021 to protect the collective safety of everyone involved.

The news comes after Team Canada announced late Sunday night they would not be sending any Olympians or Paralympians to Japan. 

For Emmanuel, a track-and-field competitor, the news was a bit of a mixed bag. “I was kinda upset because this would have been my third Olympics and I was going for big goals for the country,” she said. “But being high-risk because I have asthma, for me, I think it was a good decision.”

HuffPost Canada spoke with Emmanuel and three other athletes in the video above on the “rollercoaster of emotion” leading up to the decision and what comes next in 2021 in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.