The World Olympians held their celebration virtually because of the pandemic ©WOA

Simidele Adeagbo, Nigeria’s first Olympian in skeleton, has made a call for more diversity at the Winter Olympic Games.

"In Pyeongchang, roughly 70 per cent of the participants are from Europe and the Americas and that's not representatives of the world," Adeagbo said.

"How do we move from there to creating a space where we can see a wider representation of humanity?" she asked.

"It is really important to have representation in that moment.

She insisted that visibility and access to sport was vital to assure greater representation.

"If you can’t see it, you can’t be in it," she said.

The five new
The five new "Olympians for Life" inducted to coincide with Beijing 2022 ©WOA

Adeagbo was speaking as she was inducted as one of the five "Olympian for Life" by the World Olympians Association.

She had been nominated for "her ongoing work to inspire and empower girls from some of the world’s most marginalised communities through the power of winter sport".

"We are delighted to be inducting five outstanding individuals into 'Olympians for Life', celebrating the achievements from their competitive career and beyond," WOA President Joel Bouzou said.

"Their stories show that an Olympian is much more than a champion and illustrate that the Olympic values spread far wider than their respective sports."

A virtual ceremony was hosted by Jamaican bobsleigh pioneer Chris Stokes and streamed live on social media.

The 1964 figure skating silver medallist Alain Calmat of France was honoured for "his dedication to medicine and politics and giving back to society after a life in sport".

A doctor and politician, he lit the final cauldron at the 1968 Grenoble Olympics.

Canada’s Clara Hughes is one of a distinguished group to win medals at both Summer and Winter Games. 

She won two Olympic bronze medals for cycling in 1996, took Commonwealth gold in 2002 and also rode in the women’s Tour de France on four occasions.

She took Olympic speed skating gold in 2006 and ended her career with six Olympic medals.

She was recognised for her work in "encouraging meaningful conversations within sport and supporting others to combat the stigma around mental illness."

India’s first luge competitor Shiva Keshavan was honoured for his "trailblazing achievements and initiatives in grassroots development programmes to grow winter sports within India".

Ben Sandford of New Zealand competed in skeleton at three Olympic Games. 

He has subsequently become the leader of the World Anti-Doping Agency's Athlete Committee.

His was recognised for "the fight for cleaner sport and championing integrity, fairness and equality within sport".