Gymnastics star McKayla Maroney isn’t shying away from the camera. Her most recent Instagram post boasts a stunning green dress with long tresses of her dark hair falling perfectly in place. And Maroney’s best feature? Her smoldering gaze of confidence.
“Happy Saturday, hope you got to sleep in,” Maroney captioned the photo.
Maroney often shares her winning moments on social media. The athlete has donned many looks since the 2012 Olympic Games in London where she earned two medals. Showing her mental toughness as a gymnast as well as her feminine side, the gymnast has come into her own.
Additionally, Maroney has become somewhat of a fashion icon in her own right. Never apologizing for her style, the gymnast made it clear she’s a grown woman and her style often reflects that.
Maroney’s Gymnastics Legacy
Aside from her stunning acrobatics, Maroney is known for her famous side-pout caught on camera after snagging Olympic silver for her nearly perfect vault in 2012.
As a result, Maroney became an internet meme. Despite saying she made “the face” for just a couple seconds, it is one of her most notorious moments. The athlete has always made light of the moment, even appearing in a GEICO commercial poking fun at herself.
In addition to worldwide acclaim for her expressions, Maroney also received a team gold medal at the London Games.
Maroney on Speaking Out
When disgraced USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar made headlines, many athletes spoke out. The horrors committed by a man entrusted with teens and children shocked the world. As the abuse continued, the USA Gymnastics organization stood by and did nothing. Trading silence and injury for gold medals, the system failed its athletes repeatedly.
McKayla Maroney was among those abused.
It took her years to find her voice and come forward. However, with the support of so many, she finally spoke up.
In a series of testimonials and tweets, the 25-year-old recalled competing with concussions and broken bones. She was repeatedly told she was fine – or shouted at for raising concern.
“I was just trying to accomplish my dream, but I had abuse coming at me from many angles that I didn’t understand how to process at 15. I had to suppress it, and I had to minimize it, just to get through the day,” Maroney said.
Not only did hundreds of athletes suffer sexual abuse at the hands of Nassar, many felt forced to compete with injuries.
In solidarity with the support of other female gymnasts, Maroney has been an advocate for change in the sport. This includes Maroney showing support for Simone Biles after she exited a majority of the Tokyo Olympic Games to focus on her mental health.