Athlete Highlight: Kaylee Jondahl

Growing up, many young girls dip their toes into various sports. Many try dance, soccer, and basketball. For the last 17 years, Kaylee Jondahl has solely placed her heart and soul into the difficult sport of gymnastics.

For the 2014-2015 Stout gymnastics season, though, it was a rough start. There were only 13 girls on the team, and many became sick or had injuries that kept them from competing.

As soon as the sick and injured girls were healthy enough to compete again, they focused on doing their greatest at every practice in hopes of keeping their nationals dreams alive.

Once the team hit the regionals meet where they would compete to qualify for nationals, Jondahl says “the team put in all of their effort, hard work, and trust in each competition, and it really showed.”

Jondahl competed in the all-around this season, and says that her “favorite events are floor and vault because these two come easiest to her.”

At the regional meet, she qualified individually for the 2015 national meet in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

She says that nationals were nerve wracking because she had to wait for many other girls to do their routines before she could do hers.

One thought that kept going through her mind was “it’s just one more meet, it’s nothing different.”

After all of the nerves had subsided, Jondahl finished her floor routine and had an impressive 9.8 score from both judges. She had become the 2015 NCGA floor exercise champion.

Her advice for collegiate gymnasts is to “set a goal and never give up. There are going to be days where quitting seems like the best option. Fight through those moments and achieve your goals.”

Kaylee Jondahl is a sophomore from Elk River, Minnesota and is majoring in business administration.

Photo Credit: UW-Stout Athletics