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Ovation: Has McKalya Maroney Impressed You Yet?
McKayla Rose Maroney is the American gymnast who won gold medals in the team and vault competitions at the 2011 World Championships before rising to international fame as a member of the gold medal-winning U.S. women’s gymnastics team at the 2012 Summer Olympics where she won the individual silver medal on vault. But Maroney may be even more famous for her “not impressed” face, which became an internet meme during and following the 2012 Olympics.
Maroney later poked fun at the meme on various occasions including appearances on The Late Show with David Letterman, Dancing with the Stars: All-Stars, and Extra. Her most notable appearance may have been in November 2012 when she and the rest of the U.S. Gymnastics team met United States President Barack Obama at the White House. During that visit, she and President Obama posed for a photo together, both making her famous “not impressed” expression, that made the top spot on Yahoo’s list of “Most Viral Photos” of 2012.
Yesterday, Maroney defended her vault title at the World Championships in Antwerp, Belgium. Maroney, 17, stuck her first vault, a high-flying Amanar, for 15.966 points, though she came a bit off balance in her dismount. It was the highest-scoring vault of the competition. After a bit of a delay, she scored a 15.483 for a 15.724 average to beat teammate Simone Biles for gold by 0.129 of a point.
“To be completely honest, it was kind of scary. There definitely was some pressure on me. Looking back isn’t going to help you. Moving forward is the thing you have to do.” – McKayla Maroney
Few people know that Maroney was injured during a dismount from the uneven bars while performing in September 2012. An MRI revealed that she had fractured the tibia in her left leg that required the insertion of two screws to repair the fracture. She wore an immobilizer to keep her leg straight until doctors eventually determined that she could resume limited walking and eventually rebuild her range of motion, returning to competition in October of the same year. This, to me, makes her win yesterday all the more impressive.
Are YOU impressed?
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