Exclusive: Gabby Douglas talks new dramatic floor routine and comeback to gymnastics

Hartford, Connecticut - Three-time Olympic champion Gabby Douglas is making a triumphant return to the gymnastics world, and she’s doing it with a bold new floor routine that breaks away from her past performances.

Olympic champion Gabby Douglas is making a triumphant return to the gymnastics world with a bold new floor routine.
Olympic champion Gabby Douglas is making a triumphant return to the gymnastics world with a bold new floor routine.  © Harry How / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

After a six-year hiatus from competitive gymnastics, Douglas has reentered the scene with a renewed sense of purpose and a fresh artistic vision thanks to the creative choreography of Daymon Jones.

Known for her bubbly and energetic routines, the star athlete wanted to showcase a different side of herself with this comeback.

"We wanted something very different and something very mature and kinda outside the box," Douglas told TAG.

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"We didn’t want the bouncy Gabby, we wanted the mysterious and very dramatic floor routine."

"I worked on it a lot!" she added.

The decision to pivot to a more mature and dramatic performance was driven by Douglas’ desire to reflect her growth and evolution both as an athlete and as an individual.

The new routine is a stark contrast to the youthful exuberance that characterized her routines during the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, where she won hearts and gold medals alike.

Gabby Douglas' new floor routine transcends traditional gymnastics choreography

Gabby Douglas' new floor routine transcends the dramatic boundaries of traditional choreography.
Gabby Douglas' new floor routine transcends the dramatic boundaries of traditional choreography.  © BEN STANSALL / AFP

Jones, the choreographer behind this innovative new routine, played a pivotal role in bringing Douglas’ vision to life.

His expertise in crafting routines that tell a story through movement was the perfect match for Douglas’ aspirations.

Together they worked tirelessly to create a performance that is both technically challenging and artistically profound.

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The result is a floor routine that exudes mystery and drama, with every movement carefully designed to captivate the audience and judges while bringing back what the sport has seemed to have lost over the years – true artistry.

Douglas’ dedication to perfecting this routine is evident in her every step, leap, and tumble.

The choreography showcases her incredible athleticism, highlighting her ability to convey emotion and narrative through her performance.

Gabby Douglas' passion-fueled gymnastics comeback

Douglas' return in gymnastics is not just a comeback – it's a statement.
Douglas' return in gymnastics is not just a comeback – it's a statement.  © IMAGO / ZUMA Press Wire

Douglas’ return to gymnastics is more than just a comeback – it’s a statement.

After taking time away from the sport, she has returned with a newfound maturity and a clear vision for her legacy.

The 28-year-old's return to elite competition is a testament to her resilience, creativity, and relentless pursuit of excellence.

"I missed gymnastics and I loved it. It ended rough for me in 2016," she said to TAG.

"So, I didn't want to end on that note. Regardless of the outcome, I want to make sure that I end on love and joy instead of hating something that I love."

As she prepares to compete once again, the gymnastics community eagerly anticipates seeing Douglas in action.

Gabby Douglas' return to gymnastics is not just a new chapter in her career, but also a celebration of her journey and the growth she has experienced along the way.

Her comeback is a reminder that, even after stepping away, an athlete can return stronger, wiser, and more inspired. Douglas is bound to once again leave an indelible mark on the world of gymnastics, inspiring a new generation of gymnasts to dream big and embrace their unique journeys.

Gabby Douglas will compete in Session II of the Core Classics on Saturday at 7 PM ET airing on NBC.

Cover photo: Harry How / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

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