Racheal Riley suffered PTSD after Strictly

Rachel Riley dancing with Pasha Kovalev  on Strictly Come Dancing
Rachel Riley dancing with Pasha Kovalev on Strictly Come Dancing Image credit:

Mathematician and TV presenter Rachel Riley has revealed she suffered PTSD after competing in BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing.

The Countdown star, who competed in the show in 2013, admits she can’t watch Strictly anymore and even the theme tune sends shivers down her spine.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom though, after starring on the show Riley ended up dancing her dance partner Pasha Kovalev a month after she ended her marriage with Jamie Gilbert.

The 32-year-old told OK!:  "I needed cognitive behavioural therapy after competing in 2013 and developed post-traumatic stress disorder.

"If I heard the theme music, I’d start reliving the experience. It was scary and unnerving, so my way of dealing with it is to avoid watching.

"Mind you, if I hadn’t competed, I wouldn’t have met Pasha."

Riley married Kovalev in June 2019 at a ceremony held in Ls Vegas after the couple announced they were expecting their first child.

In April this year Riley revealed she was pregnant with the couple’s second child.

But speaking to The Times she warned celebrities to think twice before signing up for Strictly after her own mental health suffered from appearing on the show.

Riley said: "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."

Strictly Come Dancing is on BBC ONE, Saturday evenings, times vary and is available afterwards on BBC iPlayer.