Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Gymnast Shawn Johnson

Here's a closer look at Johnson, from gymnastics highlights to personal likes

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Gymnast Shawn Johnson is a favorite American gymnast. Although she no longer competes, she continues to be in the spotlight occasionally, whether judging the Miss America pageant or as a guest star on reality TV shows, like "Celebrity Apprentice" in 2015. She has also published three books. 

Here's a closer look at Johnson, from her gymnastics highlights to her personal likes.

Johnson was born on Jan.

19, 1992, in Des Moines, Iowa. She is the only child of Doug and Teri Johnson.

Today, she's married to former Oakland Raiders' player, Andrew East. He proposed to her at Wrigley Field during a Chicago Cubs game. 

Here are five other things to know about Johnson: 

1. She Had Incredible Success in 2007 and 2008

Shawn Johnson had one of the best rookie seasons ever recorded in 2007. In her first year as a senior competitor, she won the all-around at the American Cup, Pan American Games, U.S. National Championships and World Championships.

Johnson led the 2008 U.S. Olympic team to a silver medal, then won silvers individually in the all-around finals and floor finals. She finally struck gold in the beam finals.

2. She Did Ultra-Difficult Gymnastics

Johnson did some of the toughest skills being performed in gymnastics when she competed in 2007 and 2008. She performed a 2.5-twisting Yurchenko; a standing full (backflip with a full twist) on beam;  a tucked double-double (two flips with two twists) on the floor; and a double-twisting double layout off the bars.

3. She Mounted a Competitive Comeback for 2012

In May of 2010, Johnson announced she would officially make a run at the 2012 Olympic Games. Still recovering from an ACL and meniscus tear in her knee suffered during a skiing accident, Johnson's first competition back was the 2011 U.S. Classic.

She competed on the bars and beam at classics and added vault at the 2011 U.S. nationals.

Then, Johnson was named as the second alternate to the world team and was given a spot on the Pan American Games team. She helped the Pan Am team earn a gold medal, and she won an individual silver medal on bars.

On June 3, 2012, Johnson announced she was retiring from gymnastics and taking herself out of contention for the Olympic team.

4. She Was One of America's Favorite Athletes

In Iowa, Oct. 17 was deemed Shawn Johnson Day by former Gov. Chet Culver. Johnson has also been pictured on McDonald's cups and Coca-Cola boxes.

Johnson won the 2008 AAU Sullivan Award and was the champion on the eighth season of the reality show "Dancing with the Stars." She returned to the show for the all-star season in 2012 and placed second.

5. Her Favorite Gymnast Was Kim Zmeskal

Here are a few of Johnson’s favorite things, as listed in 2007:

  • School subject: English
  • Hobbies: scrapbooking and walking dogs at a local animal shelter
  • Gymnast: Kim Zmeskal
  • Athlete in another sport: Lance Armstrong
  • Food: steak and chicken kabobs, strawberries
  • Book: "You Go Girl!," by Kim Doren and Charlie Jones

Gymnastics Results

International:

  • 2011 Pan American Games: 1st team; 2nd bars
  • 2008 Olympics: 2nd team; 2nd all-around; 1st beam; 2nd floor
  • 2008 Tyson American Cup: 2nd all-around; 1st vault, 2nd bars, 1st beam; 1st floor
  • 2007 world championships: 1st team; 1st all-around; 1st floor
  • 2007 Pan American Games: 1st team; 1st all-around; 1st bars; 1st beam; 2nd floor
  • 2007 Tyson American Cup: 1st all-around
  • 2006 Junior Pan American Games: 1st team; 1st all-around; 2nd bars; 1st beam; 2nd floor
  • 2006 Pacific Alliance Championships (Junior Division): 1st team; 1st all-around; 1st vault; 2nd beam; 1st floor

National:

  • 2011 Visa Championships (U.S. nationals): 6th bars; 4th beam
  • 2011 U.S. classic: 11th bars; 16th beam
  • 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials: 1st all-around; 2nd vault; 4th bars; 1st beam; 1st floor
  • 2008 Visa Championships (U.S. nationals): 1st all-around; 2nd beam; 1st floor
  • 2007 Visa Championships (U.S. nationals): 1st all-around; 3rd bars; 1st beam; 1st floor
  • 2006 Visa Championships (U.S. nationals, junior division): 1st all-around; 1st vault; 2nd bars; 1st beam; 1st floor
  • 2006 U.S. classic: 1st all-around; 2nd vault; 3rd beam (tie); 2nd floor
  • 2005 Visa Championships (U.S. nationals, junior division): 10th all-around; 4th vault
  • 2005 U.S. classic: 3rd all-around; 3rd beam


See For Yourself

Check out photographs of Johnson in action.

Watch Johnson compete on "Dancing With the Stars."