5 Things to Know About Gymnast McKayla Maroney

The vault champion and "not impressed" gymnast is no longer competing.

McKayla Maroney
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McKayla Maroney Photo Gallery

She was one of the best vaulters of all time.

Maroney is probably best-known for her picture-perfect Amanar vault. At the 2010 junior US nationals, she first garnered a lot of buzz when she stuck it cold. Watch her vault in 2010.

In 2011, Maroney became world vault champion -- only the third American to ever win this title. Watch Maroney win the world vault title.

In the team finals of the 2012 Olympics, Maroney again did one of the best vaults ever performed, earning a huge 16.233 score that helped the team win gold.

Watch Maroney's Olympic vault in team finals.

She earned the silver on vault in the event finals (more on that below) and then went on to win one more vault title at the 2013 worlds, making her one of the most decorated gymnasts in history on that event.

She may be best known for one facial expression.

The favorite for the individual vault gold at the Olympics, Maroney won the silver medal in London after falling on her lesser-practiced vault: a round-off, half-on, front handspring full off. A photo taken during the vault awards ceremony showing her disappointment at her performance has since become a tumblr page called "McKayla is not impressed."

The image went viral, and when the US Olympic team visited the White House after London, Maroney even did the face with President Barack Obama. Obama quipped at the time, "I want to talk to you one second about the face ... I pretty much do that face at least once a day.”

She is no longer competing.

After the 2013 worlds, Maroney struggled through injury after injury, as well as other health concerns. She never returned to competition, and did an interview with Gymcastic in February of 2016 saying she didn't want to use the word "retirement" because she still wanted to be involved in the sport, but that she was no longer training and competing.

She also had some criticism for the training she went through both at her personal gym, All Olympia Gymnastics Center, and at the national team training camps. (Listen to the interview here.)

Maroney's personal coaches, Arthur Akopyan and Galina Marinova later responded here.

She did some hard skills during her career.

Besides her Amanar vault, Maroney did a tour-jete half on beam (at :43), a Weiler kip to piked Jaegar combo (at :16) on bars, and a double layout and a back 3.5 twist on floor.

She'd like to be an actress or singer.

Born on December 9, 1995, Maroney lives in Laguna Niguel, California. Her parents are Mike and Erin Maroney, and she has two siblings, Tarynn and Kav.

Maroney was coached by Arthur Akopyan and Galina Marinova at All Olympia Gymnastics Center during much of her elite career. (2010 world team member Mattie Larson also attended this gym).

She says her favorite foods are sushi, strawberries, and mangos, and would like to pursue music, leotard design and acting as potential career paths.

McKayla Maroney's Gymnastics Results:

International:

  • 2013 World Championships: 1st vault
  • 2012 Olympic Games: 1st team; 2nd vault
  • 2012 City of Jesolo Trophy: 1st team; 4th all-around; 1st vault; 6th floor
  • 2011 World Championships: 1st team; 1st vault
  • 2011 City of Jesolo Trophy: 1st team; 1st all-around; 1st vault; 5th bars; 5th beam (tie); 4th floor
  • 2010 Pan American Championships: 1st team; 1st vault; 1st floor

National:

  • 2013 P&G Championships (US Nationals): 1st vault; 1st floor
  • 2013 Secret US Classic: 1st vault; 3rd floor
  • 2012 US Olympic Trials: 7th all-around; 1st vault; 5th floor
  • 2011 Visa Championships (US Nationals): 2nd all-around; 1st vault; 5th floor
  • 2010 US Nationals (Junior Division): 3rd all-around; 1st vault; 4th floor (tie)
  • 2010 US Classics (Junior Division): 7th all-around; 2nd vault (tie); 5th floor
  • 2009 US Nationals (Junior Division): 3rd vault