Jordyn Wieber

Jordyn Wieber Biography.com

Athlete, Gymnast(1995–)
American gymnast Jordyn Wieber is best known as the first U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics team member to hail from Michigan.

Synopsis

Olympian Jordyn Wieber was born on July 12, 1995 in DeWitt, Michigan. She started gymnastics training at the age of 4, and went on to win numerous competitions in the sport. Wieber was selected to compete with the U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics team at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, and in late July 2012, she and her teammates—Gabrielle Douglas, Kyla Ross, McKayla Maroney and Aly Raisman—took home a team gold medal. Fans worldwide watched as judges announced the team's medal win—the first gold medal for the American women's gymnastics team since 1996.

Early Life

American gymnast Jordyn Marie Wieber was born on July 12, 1995 in DeWitt, Michigan, to parents Rita and David Wieber, who recognized in their daughter an athletic aptitude when she was about 2 years old. They placed her in a gymnastics class and in two years' time Wieber started taking the training seriously.

At just 7 years old, Wieber qualified to the 2002 National TOP 7-8-Year-Old Diamond Team. The following year, she competed at the 2003 Early State Championships, and won vault, bars, beam, floor and all-around. In 2004, Wieber participated in the Michigan State Championships and placed second all-around. By the time she was 10, Wieber had already qualified to Level 10, the highest level in the Junior Olympic program, and a year later she qualified to the international elite level.

Gymnastic Achievements

While successful in many of her gymnastic endeavors, it was Wieber's performance in March 2011 that caught the world's attention. She had filled in for an injured athlete at the American Cup and went head to head against Aliya Mustafina, who was reigning world all-around champion at the time. Wieber then proceeded to beat her opponent. Several months later, she won the gold medal in the all-around at the world championships in Tokyo, Japan. She also won a bronze medal on the balance beam, and helped the U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics team capture the gold medal.

In March 2012, Wieber competed in and won her third American Cup all-around competition. She also competed in the 2012 Pacific Rim Gymnastics Championship, helping the American team place first and individually winning the all-around competition. She performed at the Visa Championships in June 2012, winning the all-around with a two-day combined high score. Wieber went on to compete at the Olympic Trials in San Jose, California, and was chosen to compete with the U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics team at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England.

"It feels amazing to be an Olympian," Wieber was quoted as saying in an article on the USA Gymnastics website, following the 2012 Olympic Trials. "This is definitely the best day of my life and knowing that all of my hard work has paid off is amazing. I'm just so proud of each and every girl who competed here today."

While many experts predicted that Wieber and one of her teammates, Gabby Douglas, had the best chance at winning individual medals at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Wieber was beaten by both Douglas and another teammate, Aly Raisman, in the all-around finals. Wieber didn't miss out on gold altogether, however; she and other members of the U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics team—Gabby Douglas, Aly Raisman, Kyla Ross and McKayla Marone—went on to win a team gold medal. Fans worldwide watched as judges announced the team's medal win—the first gold medal for the American women's gymnastics team since 1996.

Wieber went on to place seventh in the individual floor exercise at the 2012 Olympics.

Fame

Since turning professional in 2011, Wieber has transformed into a gymnastics star, racking up several sponsors, including Kellogg's and AT&T. Not only has she received fame for her various awards, she's known for being the first U.S. Olympic women's gymnastics team member to hail from Michigan.

In spite of her fame, Wieber has remained down to earth. To her family, friends and community, "she is just Jo—a girl with a great smile every day who just happens to have out-of-world talent at 17," according to a July 2012 article in the Detroit Free Press. Wieber has also remained true to herself, despite appearing on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in January 2012, and on the cover of a July issue of Sports Illustrated. "I don't think I've changed all that much," she told the Detroit Free Press. "I'm pretty much the same person I've always been, just maybe a little more determined."

In fact, a July 2012 Washington Post article described Wieber as an athlete with "impeccable concentration and a stoic demeanor," which she herself has described as character traits that help her perform better.

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