Q: Do you have a nickname?
“Bri [pronounced bree].”
Q: When and why did you first become interested in gymnastics?
“At age 4, when my mom took me out of ballet and put me in gymnastics. She did it because all I did was flip all around the house, grocery store, and everywhere else I went.”
Q: Do you have any good/funny memories from when you first started taking gymnastics classes?
“At Level 5, I got my lowest bar score ever. I attempted my kip, missed it, and just decided to dismount without finishing the routine.”
Q: When did you decide you wanted to compete?
“I decided I wanted to compete at age 8.”
And, when did you want to compete on the elite level? What about competition appeals to you?
“I wanted to compete at the elite level at age 13. I enjoy the sense of accomplishment when it’s over and the team-bonding during competitions.”
Q: What is your training regimen?
“I practice 20 to 25 hours per week.”
Was that a big change when you made the switch to competitive gymnastics?
“No big change.”
Q: What is your favorite event?
Q: What is your favorite skill?
“My front aerial on the beam.”
Q: Who is your favorite gymnast or who is your “idol”?
Q: How have you grown as a gymnast during your career, both skill wise and mentally?
“I’m more consistent, I have better form, and I’m less fearful.”
Q: How has gymnastics helped you as a person?
“It has helped me to stay focused, work as a team member, and to be committed and dedicated to something long term.”
Q: If you had to select one life-lesson that gymnastics has taught you, what would it be?
“Hard work pays off!”
Q: What are your biggest accomplishments or best memories in your career?
“Making the USA Women’s National Team.”
Q: Do you want to compete in collegiate gymnastics?
“Yes, at the University of Michigan.”
Q: What are your favorite subjects in school?
“English and Art.”
Q: If you plan to go to college, do you know what you want to study there?
“I’m still undecided.”
Q: What are your goals for the future, both as an athlete and after you are finished competing?
“I want a successful college gymnastics career, and to obtain a degree. I’d like to work in a field that helps people, especially athletes.”
Q: When you’re not in the gym, how do you enjoy spending your time? Do you have any hobbies or favorite activities?
“Hanging out with friends, shopping, and watching Netflix.”
Q: What is your favorite food?
Q: What is your favorite movie?
“The Longest Yard.”
Q: What is your favorite book?
“The Hunger Games.”
Q: Who is your favorite music group/artist?
Q: Are any of your family members current or former athletes? Which sports?
“My dad played high school football, and my cousin, Michael Robinson, is a fullback for the Seattle Seahawks.”
Q: Do you have any competition rituals? Lucky charms?
“I tell myself that I will hit in warm-ups.”
Q: What’s on your IPod right now? What type of music do you enjoy listening to? How about before a meet when you’re trying to get focused and pumped up?
“Pop music, for all three.”
Q: If you had to pick 3 words to describe yourself as a gymnast, what are they?
“Consistent, focused, and calm.”
Q: What 3 words describe you as a person, not the gymnast?
“Quiet, funny, a good listener.”
By Lauren Ely
Brianna Brown will attend her first school dance this spring when she goes to her junior prom.
Once a member of the National Team, Brown, 16, decided Level 10 was a better path for her.
“I just really wasn’t enjoying [gymnastics] anymore, and I just wanted to take a break from it for a little while,” Brown said. “I just wanted to focus on getting back into school because I had been homeschooled since the sixth grade.”
Now that the West Chester, Ohio, native has had more time this season, she says she’s gotten back to enjoying all the reasons she started gymnastics in the first place: being a part of a team, working hard to achieve a goal and just competing.
Brown competed at the elite level for 2010, 2011 and 2012, and although she isn’t sure if she’ll ever go back to elite, her most memorable moment was at U.S. nationals in 2011.
“I remember being so nervous,” Brown said. “I had trained so well. I had just kind of been on autopilot, and I made my beam routine. That was when I made the national team.”
Brown will graduate from high school in 2014. She has a full scholarship to the University of Georgia where she plans to compete all-around and study nursing or physical therapy.
But for now, she just wants take life day-by-day and enjoy life as it come – including her junior prom.
“I just feel like my life is so different now, and I’m getting used to it,” Brown said. “There are a lot of things I didn’t even realize I was missing that I’m enjoying now.”