The way she made the judges feel!
Katelyn Ohashi, a 21-year-old UCLA senior, helped the Bruins women’s gymnastics team secure a victory at the 2019 Under Armour Collegiate Challenge over the weekend — and also won the internet’s heart with her viral floor routine.
The routine — which earned Ohashi a perfect 10 and praise from a slew of big names (including Sen. Kamala Harris!) — featured music like Tina Turner’s “Proud Mary,” Earth, Wind & Fire’s “September,” The Jackson 5’s “ABC” and several of Michael Jackson’s other hits, such as “The Way You Make Me Feel.”
UCLA’s total score was 197.700, taking first place, according to the Daily Bruin.
Responding to praise after UCLA Gymnastics shared a clip of her routine (and noted that a 10 wasn’t “enough”), Ohashi wrote on Twitter, “Now I just gotta learn how to clap on the beat.”
In her early gymnastics career, Ohashi competed with USA Gymnastics’ junior national team for four years, the Washington Post reported. According to the outlet, back in 2013 she won the American Cup over then-teammate Simone Biles.
Ultimately, Ohashi opted to retire from elite gymnastics, as she explained in an emotional video for The Players’ Tribune last summer.
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“There was a time where I was on top of the world, an Olympic hopeful,” Ohashi narrated the video, adding, “I was unbeatable, until I wasn’t.”
She told viewers that she faced constant criticism from fans over her capabilities and body, ultimately realizing: “Gymnastics was my worth, it was my life. I hated myself.”
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She decided to instead focus on being a college athlete after competing with a fractured back and two torn shoulders.
Ohashi’s floor routines have captured the attention of social media, before — including last year at the PAC-12 championships, when she competed to a Michael Jackson medley.
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In fact, the school’s athletes have often gone viral.
In 2017, then-UCLA senior Hallie Mossett enlisted the help of some of Beyoncé‘s biggest hits during a competition in which she performed a Sasha Fierce-themed floor routine — and earned a near-perfect final score.
And a year prior, Sophina DeJesus incorporated dance moves like the head-bobbing Dab and widely popular Whip/Nae Nae into her floor routine — scoring a 9.925 from judges.
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