Jordyn Wieber announces gymnastics retirement

0 Comments

U.S. Olympic team champion Jordyn Wieber announced her elite gymnastics retirement Friday, writing she’s been away from the gym for about a year and confirming a December report she would not try to make the 2016 Olympic team.

“Since the age of four, gymnastics was the center of my entire life,” Wieber wrote. “Deciding to end that part of my life was one of the most difficult, emotion-filled decisions I have ever made.”

Wieber, 19, hasn’t competed since she won gold as part of the 2012 U.S. Olympic team.

Wieber’s career goes down as one of the best in U.S. history. Wieber and Shannon Miller are the only U.S. gymnasts to win World Championships individual all-around gold medals and Olympic team golds.

At the 2012 Olympics, Wieber placed fourth overall in all-around qualifying but third among Americans, behind Gabby Douglas and Aly Raisman. One nation may qualify a maximum two athletes for each individual final, meaning Wieber missed the Olympic all-around final one year after winning the World all-around title.

Two days later, she helped the U.S. to its first Olympic team gold since 1996. She later placed seventh in the floor exercise final.

Medical tests after the Olympics showed Wieber competed in London with a stress fracture in her right leg.

“I want to be sure it is known that I am completely fulfilled and content with my experience at the Games,” Wieber wrote. “It was difficult to accept the reality of having an injury at the most crucial moment in my career. I am grateful that I was able to compete and be part of winning the Olympic Team Gold.”

In 2011, Wieber swept the American Cup, U.S. Championships and World Championships all-around titles in her first year as a senior gymnast. She also won the 2012 American Cup and 2012 U.S. Championship before placing second to Douglas at the Olympic trials.

The other four members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic team plan to continue competing. Douglas and Raisman rejoined the U.S. national team in November and could compete this month for the first time since the Olympics.

Olympic vault silver medalist McKayla Maroney won the World title on vault in 2013 but missed all of 2014 following knee surgery in March.

Kyla Ross, the youngest member of the 2012 Olympic team, competed each of the last two years. She won silver and bronze in the all-around at the 2013 and 2014 World Championships behind the new U.S. star, Simone Biles.

No U.S. women’s gymnast has made back-to-back Olympic teams since Amy Chow and Dominique Dawes in 1996 and 2000.

Biles headlines the American Cup in Arlington, Texas, on Saturday (NBC and NBC Sports Live Extra, 1-3 p.m. ET).

Is Simone Biles unbeatable?