Catch Up on Jordan Chiles's Best Gymnastics Routines Before Her Big Olympics Debut
Gymnast Jordan Chiles is about to make her long-awaited and highly anticipated Olympics debut at the forthcoming Summer Games in Tokyo. A few years ago, however, she almost left the sport entirely.
Jordan decided to pursue gymnastics after being enamored by Shawn Johnson while watching the 2008 Summer Olympics. She was only 7 years old then, but Jordan would quickly move up, reaching the elite level by age 11. But after feeling pressured and experiencing some disappointments, Jordan felt she had lost her spark and considered quitting. Then she met Simone Biles.
In 2019, Jordan moved from her hometown of Vancouver, WA, to Spring, TX, so that she could train at the World Champions Centre owned by Simone and her family. Jordan, who is now 20, has since won medals at Nationals, been the all-around champion at the Winter Cup's first-ever women's competition, and shined at the recent Olympic Trials, securing her spot on Team USA alongside Simone.
"I discovered that gymnastics doesn't always have to be about strictness and being so hard on yourself and having so much doubt," Jordan told The New York Times in June. "I actually realized this when I saw Simone compete. She looks like she's having fun out there, laughing and giggling, and doesn't look stressed or tired. I was like, 'You know, I'm going to try that one of these days and see how it turns out.'"
Ahead of the Olympics, look back at some of the standout moments in Jordan's athletic career so far, from the Wonder Woman routine that put her on the map to the improvised balance beam save that felt heroic.
Jordan Chiles's Wonder Woman Floor Routine at the 2018 Nationals
Jordan first received widespread recognition when she competed to Wonder Woman theme music while wearing a leotard resembling the superhero's iconic armor. Though her floor routine didn't earn her a medal in the event at the 2018 US National Championships, she did receive a standing ovation and praise from Gal Gadot herself. The DC Extended Universe star tweeted, "Jordan Chiles! There are not many words I have to say. This routine says it all."
Jordan Chiles's Balance Beam at the 2017 Nationals
Jordan managed to turn a misstep into a moment during her beam performance at the 2017 US National Championships. While trying to execute a wolf turn, Jordan momentarily lost her footing but then launched into an improvised triple turn before grounding herself, garnering cheers from the crowd. She would go on to come in fourth in the event and second all-around.
"I was kind of crooked at the beginning, and so, normally, I just stand up, but then I didn't want to fall, so I just tucked in my knee," Jordan told NBC Sports. Describing her inner monologue, Jordan said, "After a while, I didn't realize I was still turning until people were like, 'Whoa,' and I was like, oh wait, I'm still turning. I think I should open."
Jordan Chiles's Spider-Man Floor Routine at the 2021 Nationals
Jordan channeled another superhero at the 2021 US National Championships, where she performed a powerful floor routine set to music from Spider-Man: Far From Home. The performance earned her a 14.000, and Jordan ended up going home with a bronze medal in the all-around. On taking inspiration from the swinging superhero, Jordan said, according to Gymnastics Now, "He can fly; he can shoot webs . . . That's kind of like us. As athletes, we can do anything we put our minds to."
Another Wonder Woman Routine by Jordan Chiles at the 2019 Nationals
At the 2019 US National Championships, Jordan performed a revamped floor routine set to her now signature Wonder Woman music. The year she gained in experience, however, was evident: whereas her floor performance earned her a 12.500 at the 2018 competition, this time around, she scored a 13.750.
Jordan Chiles on Beam at the 2021 Winter Cup
Jordan had an outstanding showing at the 2021 Winter Cup. In addition to being the all-around champion, Jordan won gold in vault and floor. It was her beam routine, however, that also amassed attention. Though she came in second in the event, it marked the first time she executed a full-twisting double back dismount while competing. "I was going out there and doing it how I practiced everything," Jordan told the Olympic Channel. "The dismount was something that I was ready to compete."
Every Jordan Chiles Routine at the 2021 Olympic Trials
After years of dedication, Jordan is on her way to the Olympics! She did exceptionally well at the recent Trials, where she received a silver medal in uneven bars and bronze in both all-around and floor. At the end of the two-day event, it was confirmed that Jordan would be joining Simone Biles, Jade Carey, Sunisa Lee, Grace McCallum, and MyKayla Skinner on Team USA. Impactful photos captured Jordan's emotional reaction to the news, and she later said on The Today Show, "It was honestly the most amazing feeling of my life."