I am no fan of reality tv, I don't see Strictly or DOI as reality TV, they are competitions where people can transfer their skills and people can see the person away from the sport.
I agree with this. At least, I don't see all reality tv as equal. Sitting around in the CBB house for a couple of weeks for a cheap buck is totally different from entering a skill-based competition like Strictly or Dancing on Ice.
I recall Beth Tweddle's dad being asked during the Olympics about her plans afterwards. It was well flagged that she'd be retiring, and no-one was complaining about that. He said that she'd be looking forward to trying out some new things and taking on challenges she wasn't able to do while she was caught up in her years of very demanding training. He also said that she'd be taking on some new challenges to avoid entering into some kind of cold turkey state. For her, learning to skate and going on DOI seems an incredibly natural move. She got a bit of a break, but is able to keep on training, using her existing talents, but also trying something new, moving out of the gymnastics bubble, as well as (I presume) earning some decent money to give her some well earned financial security.
The fact it increases her level of celebrity is almost irrelevant, but I'm with others who say I'd rather see people like Beth and other Olympians getting attention as well as the usual actors and singers, and ideally instead of page 3 girls and footballers' girlfriends.
Sometimes if someone has something special that shows up on TV, they can get a career from it. John McEnroe, Jim Courier, Tracy Austin have all become excellent commentators of tennis.
This is also a good point, and a retired sports stars will eventually move into being a pundit or commentating, but it's not enough to be good at a sport, or even know a lot about a sport. Appearing on these shows is a good way to find out about and get used to the tv world.
Even if some of them are just "cashing in", I don't mind. Not all sports get good funding, and so long as they don't over-do it, and are able to re-focus on their sport when the time is right - fair play. The less well funded sports tend to also be the ones where there are gaps in the sporting calendar anyway, so why not fill that time earning money in their own right?