Why Did Olympic Gymnast Gabby Douglas Retire — Or Did She?

"I love gymnastics and love pushing myself. I never wanted to walk away on a bad day."

Melissa Willets - Author

Apr. 30 2024, Published 10:19 a.m. ET

Gabby Douglas teaches Jay Pharoah gymnastics on the IMDb Series “Special Skills” in Los Angeles in 2020
Source: Getty Images

Many of us remember the 2012 Olympic gymnastics team that inspired a nation. The incredible athletes who made up the group included Gabby Douglas, Jordyn Wieber, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman, and Kyla Ross.

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Of course, Gabby became the all-around gymnastics champion that year.

Then, we were treated to her magic yet again at the 2016 games. But since that time, we haven't seen Gabby competing, leading fans to think she retired from the sport. But did she? Here's an update on where Gabby Douglas stands today with her gymnastics career.

Gabby Douglas arrives to light The Empire State Building on August 14, 2012 in New York City
Source: Getty Images
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So, did Gabby Douglas actually retire from gymnastics?

It seems that the gold medalist never actually left gymnastics in her rear view mirror, despite what we may have assumed.

“I never announced a retirement,” Gabby said in February 2024. “I didn’t want to end this sport like I did in 2016. I wanted to take a step back and work on myself and my mental state.”

The 28-year-old added, "I love gymnastics and love pushing myself. I never wanted to walk away on a bad day."

And walk away she sure didn't! In fact, Gabby is headed for a comeback. Yes, we're pumped, too!

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Gabby Douglas may compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Although nothing is definite at time of writing, according to Gabby, she is focused on getting to Paris this summer to compete again on the world stage.

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Gabby is well on her way. She qualified for the U.S. Gymnastics Championships and will compete there in May. The next step would be the Olympic Trials in June, per Women's Health.

The athlete updated fans about her progress via her Instagram, sharing a video of a vault routine that looked pretty flawless to us — but Gabby was hard on herself in the caption.

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She wrote, "Eight years later…. well guys… it wasn’t my best showing this weekend but was so happy and grateful to be back out there on the floor doing what I love again."

Gabby continued the post by writing, "With anything there are always kinks to work out, get better, and improve. I’ve never been more excited to get back into the gym and work even harder."

Gabby finished her post by gushing, "Forever grateful for all of your love and support. It means the world. I love you guys and I’ll see you in Hartford. Hard days are the best because that’s when champions are made."

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Gabby Douglas would not be the oldest gymnast to compete in the Olympics.

Gabby may be on the older side for gymnasts at the Olympics, but she is far from the most mature athlete who may attend.

Believe it or not, 47-year-old gymnast Oksana Chusovitina from Uzebekistan is making a run for her ninth games in Paris.

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"I thought about it well and decided that after the Asian Games [in 2022], I would also prepare for the Paris 2024 Olympics," she said about potentially competing against the likes of Gabby Douglas.

Meanwhile, Simone Biles is also set to compete in Paris after taking a break from the sport.

We wish all of these athletes the best of luck and can promise we'll be watching!

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