UCLA gymnast Katelyn Ohashi's perfect routine makes Twitter, Instagram flip

The college athlete lights up the web with her floor exercise. "Now I just gotta learn how to clap on the beat," she says.

Gael Cooper
CNET editor Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." She's been a journalist since 1989, working at Mpls.St.Paul Magazine, Twin Cities Sidewalk, the Minneapolis Star Tribune, and NBC News Digital. She's Gen X in birthdate, word and deed. If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
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Gael Cooper
2 min read

Perfection is hard to come by, but Katelyn Ohashi's gymnastics routine on Friday nailed it.

The 21-year-old UCLA gymnast, originally from Seattle, scored a perfect 10.0 for her heart-pumping floor exercise routine at the Collegiate Challenge competition in Anaheim, California. She wasn't even the only UCLA Bruin to earn a 10 -- junior Kyla Ross scored one for an earlier uneven bars routine, the Daily Bruin reports.

But it was Ohashi's lively routine that went viral after the UCLA Gymnastics official Twitter account tweeted it out late Saturday, with the caption, "A 10 isn't enough for this floor routine by @katelyn_ohashi."

Even if your knowledge of gymnastics ends at somersaults, it's easy to see why Ohashi captivated the Internet. From her smiling confidence to the soaring height she achieved on picture-perfect backflips ending in a split, she rocked the routine, and the cheers from the crowd and her teammates kept things lively.

"Her whole floor routine is ridiculously hard," coach Valorie Kondos Field told The Daily Bruin. "Every single thing about it, including the backwards split that she does after her leap pass – it's insane."

As of Monday afternoon, the video had more than 25 million views. UCLA Gymnastics' tweet had more than 122,000 retweets and more than 517,000 likes. UCLA didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Ohashi herself was modest about her fame, tweeting out, "now I just gotta learn how to clap on the beat."

Fans, including some famous faces, applauded Ohashi's routine, and she responded by offering them tickets to see her in person.

And some had fun with the moves no ordinary, untrained human could pull off.

"UCLA if you are recruiting, here's me doing the same routine!!" tweeted Alyssa Limperis, sharing a joke video of her own performance. "Willing to lie about age to compete, (direct message) me ."

Numerous viewers marveled at Ohashi's sheer joy in performing.

Ohashi fans also flocked to her Instagram account, where she shared wonderfully similar looking photos of herself on the balance beam as a freshman, and again as a senior. 

"Who else is here from the Twitter clip?" wrote mo_love99. And livia_gymnastics wrote, "Your video completely blew my daughter away. 'How did she DO THAT ?!'"

The UCLA athletics program was smart enough to take advantage of its sudden fame. On Sunday, the official UCLA Gymnastics account tweeted out a follow-up: "As great as this video is of Katelyn Ohashi's perfect 10, it's next level when you see it in person! Don't miss the Bruins in Pauley Pavilion on Monday, Jan. 21 at 2 pm."

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