- Katelyn Ohashi, a gymnast and senior at UCLA, earned a perfect score at the Collegiate Challenge on Saturday with a fun, Jackson 5-inspired floor routine that had teammates and spectators cheering and dancing along.
- A video of Ohashi’s routine quickly went viral on social media and drew reactions from big names in and out of the sports world.
- The 21-year-old Seattle native’s upbeat performance was in stark contrast with the confessional she published in The Players’ Tribune in August that detailed her decision to stop pursuing her Olympic ambitions and instead compete at the collegiate level.
Katelyn Ohashi, a gymnast and senior at UCLA, took the world by storm on Saturday with a fun, Jackson 5-inspired floor routine that was technically brilliant enough to earn a perfect 10 from judges at the Collegiate Challenge.
Ohashi began the routine with a big smile and a swing of her hips before launching into a ridiculous tumbling pass that she punctuated by sticking the landing.
Neither the routine nor Ohashi’s energy dipped from there.
She danced around and hit her marks with grace, and as her minute and a half of glory reached its end, spectators and teammates erupted with cheers.
Check out the full video:
The stunning performance helped lead the Bruins to a Collegiate Challenge victory and quickly went viral on social media, with many big names weighing in on Ohashi’s brilliance.
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) January 13, 2019
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) January 14, 2019
Note to self: Go to a UCLA gymnastics meet
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) January 13, 2019
— Soledad O'Brien (@soledadobrien) January 14, 2019
The upbeat performance was striking in more ways than one for the 21-year-old Seattle native, who had teamed up with The Players’ Tribune in August to detail her decision to stop pursuing her Olympic ambitions and instead compete at the collegiate level.
“There was a time where I was on top of the world, an Olympic hopeful,” Ohashi said in the video. “I was unbeatable. Until I wasn’t.”
Ohashi competed at an elite level alongside Simone Biles not long ago, but she said the wear of gymnastics had both physical and emotional ramifications – she had torn both shoulders, fractured her back, and lost her love of the sport before deciding to forgo her Olympics dreams and take her talents to UCLA.
“I was broken,” Ohashi said.
Now, Ohashi is performing joyful routines and dominating the field as the Bruins’ premier talent. Saturday marked the sixth time in her collegiate career that she’s earned perfect marks and the fourth time she’s done so on the floor.
Ohashi seems rather content with her accomplishments in her gymnastics career – barring one small detail.
now i just gotta learn how to clap on the beat????????????♀️
— Katelyn Ohashi (@katelyn_ohashi) January 13, 2019