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US Women’s Gymnastics Team Qualifies for 2024 Olympics

This year, over 400 gymnasts traveled from 75 different countries to the United Kingdom (U.K.) for the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships. But how exactly do the World Championships work, and what happened this past week? Here’s what went down:

While the Paris Olympics won’t be until 2024, panelists have to decide over the next two years who gets to compete in the games. Only 12 teams will qualify for Paris, spots which are divided up amongst competitors in the 2022-23 World Championships, a six-day event hosted in Liverpool, England. This year three teams will be decided on, with the remaining nine decided at the 2023 World Championships in Belgium.

Every team is allowed five athletes who participate in all or some of the events. The United States (U.S.) team this year consists of Jade Carey, Jordan Chiles, Leanne Wong, Shilese Jones and Skye Blakely. Noticeably missing from this list are Suni Lee, Simone Biles and Konnor McClain. Biles and Lee are both taking time off to work on their mental health, but Suni Lee has told People that she remains undecided about participating. Konnor McClain has a bit of a different story—she was scheduled to compete this past week but had an unexpected back injury and missed the championships.

Nevertheless, the team persisted and became the first to secure one of those qualifying spots this past week in London, wracking in a total of 166.564 team points. This is the sixth consecutive gold medal won by the U.S. at the World Championships, a certified feat.

In second place is Great Britain with 163.363 points, a mere 3.2 points away from the U.S. Winning bronze and their first world medal in the team event, Canada took the final spot. Team scores are a compilation of four independent events (vault, uneven bars, beam and floor). The scores of each athlete’s performances in every apparatus are compiled into a final composite score.

When the U.S. team earned their qualifying spot in the Olympics, they secured five athlete qualifications for individual all-around events. All-around events are unique in that a gymnast competes in all events specified for their gender—for the women’s team, that’s the four mentioned above. Finalists are determined by the gymnast’s total combined scores. Simone Biles, for instance, is known for having the best all-around event score (60.565) in Olympic history. The skills, difficulty and demands of each event vary, which is why being exceptionally skilled in all four is perceived so impressively by the world.

In everyday life, however, gymnasts usually have an apparatus or two they excel at. This is where skill development is generally focused. Even the U.S. team, who won gold in the team all-around last week, have events that are paid special attention. In the individual all-around, Carey Jade performed with the highest vault score (14.773), drawing eyes with her textbook clean landing. Ranking No. 1 in uneven bars, teammate Shilese Jones scored a 14.366 and came in silver (behind Brazil’s Rebecca Andrade) for the same event.

With less than two years left before the Paris Olympics, the women’s team will be working to hone those skills. When the world is watching them step onto that blue mat in 2024, they’ll be more than ready.

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Emie is a third year at Florida State majoring in psychology, with a minor and special interest in women's studies. She aims to counsel, speak, and write about mental health associated with body image, disordered eating, self-confidence, sexual health, and exercise. She aspires to later obtain her PhD and work as a professor of psychology or women’s studies. In her spare time, she loves to lift weights, read, and spend time with friends and family.