SPORTS

UCLA gymnast's floor routine goes viral thanks to 'Nae Nae' and other bold moves

Sophina DeJesus (UCLA) Floor 2016 vs Utah 9.925

She MURDERED it! Sophina DeJesus of UCLA, everybody.

Posted by Marcus Cheatham on Saturday, February 6, 2016

Forget the Olympics. This is the gymnastics floor routine that has captured people’s attention – because it turned the sport’s paradigm on its head.

Sophina DeJesus, a 21-year-old student gymnast from the University of California, Los Angeles, took to the floor over the weekend in a competition against Utah.

While her tumbling is spot on – earning her a 9.925 score – it was the moments of more “modern” dances that have gotten more than 23 million people watching the routine on Facebook.

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“I love dancing,” DeJesus told the New York Times after her unorthodox routine. “I wanted to end my senior year with a bang.”

And that she did.

DeJesus, who is actually an All-American on bars and has only made a handful of appearances on the floor during her time in UCLA, combined traditional flips and tumbling with the whip, the nae nae, the quan and other hip-hop dances.

“My sister Savannah is an awesome dancer,” she said. “She helped me with the choreo and made it more fun.”

According to the the Daily Bruin, DeJesus, is a sociology major from Temecula, California who has been dancing and acting since she was a child.

Her score on Saturday tied for third on her team at the meet.

Samantha Peszek, an Olympic silver medalist and a former UCLA teammate of DeJesus, told the Times that her former teammate's dance moves might not get her perfect 10s but that “it doesn’t hurt.”

“The great thing about routines like Sophina’s is that they bring energy and life not only to the audience, but the rest of the team watching,” she said.

However, she said, don’t expect to see many of these dance moves in Rio de Janeiro this summer.

“There are way more requirements to an Olympic-level routine in terms of tumbling and leap elements, so there wouldn’t be enough time to do as elaborate [a] choreography as Sophina's,” Peszek said. “Also, international judges seem to appreciate more traditional style of floor choreography, so a floor routine like this would not score as well as it does in collegiate competition.”

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