Chellsie Marie Memmel (born June 23, 1988) is an American artistic gymnast. She is the 2005 world all-around champion (the third American woman, after Kim Zmeskal and Shannon Miller, to win that title) and the 2003 world champion on the uneven bars. She was a member of the United States women's gymnastics team at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China.[3]

Chellsie Memmel
Memmel performing on the balance beam at the 2008 USA Gymnastics National Championships in Boston
Personal information
Full nameChellsie Marie Memmel
Country represented United States
Born (1988-06-23) June 23, 1988 (age 35)
West Allis, Wisconsin, U.S.
ResidenceEagle, Wisconsin, U.S.
Height5 ft 2.5 in (159 cm)[1]
DisciplineWomen's artistic gymnastics
LevelSenior International Elite
Years on national team2000, 2002–09, 2011–12 (US)
GymM&M Gymnastics
Head coach(es)Andy Memmel
Eponymous skillsMemmel Turn (Floor Routine): Double turn with leg fully extended in a "Y" [2]
Medal record
Representing  United States
Olympic Games
Silver medal – second place 2008 Beijing Team
World Championships
Gold medal – first place 2003 Anaheim Team
Gold medal – first place 2003 Anaheim Uneven Bars
Gold medal – first place 2005 Melbourne All-Around
Silver medal – second place 2005 Melbourne Uneven Bars
Silver medal – second place 2005 Melbourne Balance Beam
Silver medal – second place 2006 Aarhus Team
World Cup Final
Gold medal – first place 2004 Birmingham Uneven Bars
Pan American Games
Gold medal – first place 2003 Santo Domingo Team
Gold medal – first place 2003 Santo Domingo All-Around
Gold medal – first place 2003 Santo Domingo Uneven Bars
Bronze medal – third place 2003 Santo Domingo Balance Beam
Pan American Championships
Gold medal – first place 2004 Maracaibo Uneven Bars
Gold medal – first place 2004 Maracaibo Balance Beam
Gold medal – first place 2005 Rio de Janeiro Team
Gold medal – first place 2005 Rio de Janeiro All-Around
Gold medal – first place 2005 Rio de Janeiro Uneven Bars
Gold medal – first place 2005 Rio de Janeiro Balance Beam
Pacific Rim Championships
Gold medal – first place 2006 Honolulu Team
Gold medal – first place 2006 Honolulu All-Around
Gold medal – first place 2006 Honolulu Balance Beam
Silver medal – second place 2006 Honolulu Floor Exercise
SpouseKory Maier

With a total of seven World Championship and Olympic medals, Memmel is tied with Shawn Johnson as the eighth most decorated American female gymnast, behind Simone Biles (34), Shannon Miller (16), Nastia Liukin (14), Alicia Sacramone (11), Aly Raisman (10), Jade Carey (8), and Dominique Dawes (8).[4][5]

Her return to gymnastics in her 30s attracted attention to the idea that by avoiding over-training and mistreatment, gymnasts could continue to perform at a high level in adulthood.[6] She was inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 2022.[7]

Career edit

Early career edit

Chellsie Marie Memmel was born in West Allis, Wisconsin, to Andy and Jeanelle Memmel. Both of her parents were gymnastics coaches, and they encouraged her to play around in the gym and taught her basic skills. When she was eight years old, she started training with Jim Chudy at Salto Gymnastics.

She began competing at the junior elite level in 2000.

2003 edit

Memmel became a senior international elite gymnast in 2003. She placed third at the National Podium Meet and the American Classic, and was invited to compete at the Pacific Challenge, a three-country tournament with Canada and Australia. At that competition, she won the all-around.

At the 2003 U.S. National Championships, Memmel was coming off of a hamstring injury that had limited her training time. She made mistakes during her floor exercise routine and placed tenth in the all-around. At a national team selection camp several weeks later, she was chosen to compete at the Pan American Games, but not at the World Championships.

She won four medals at the Pan American Games, including gold in the all-around and on the uneven bars.[8] During this time, the gymnasts who had been chosen for the World Championships team were dealing with injuries and illnesses: Annia Hatch tore her ACL, Ashley Postell had the flu, and Courtney Kupets tore her Achilles tendon. Memmel was an alternate to the World Championships, along with Samantha Sheehan and Terin Humphrey, and National Team Coordinator Márta Károlyi chose her and Humphrey to step in and compete. Memmel flew from the Pan American Games in Santo Domingo directly to the World Championships in Anaheim, California.[9]

Memmel led the American team in the preliminary round at Worlds, qualifying to the all-around final in second place, and first among her teammates. In the team finals, she was the only American to compete on every event, and had the highest all-around score. The U.S. finished on top, winning the country's first team gold medal at the World Championships,[10] despite competing with only five gymnasts instead of six.[11]

In the event finals, Memmel became a world champion on the uneven bars, tying with teammate Hollie Vise.

2004 edit

In 2004, Memmel competed at the American Cup and placed third, behind U.S. teammates Carly Patterson and Courtney McCool. During a national team training camp in April, she broke a metatarsal bone in her foot while training a piked Barani on balance beam,[citation needed] and she was unable to compete at the National Championships or the Olympic Trials.

She petitioned for a chance to compete at the Olympic team selection camp and was ultimately named as an alternate to the U.S. team for the 2004 Olympics.

Later in the year, Memmel won the uneven bars title at the 2004 World Cup Final.

2005 edit

Memmel began the 2005 season at the American Cup, which did not have an all-around competition that year. She won the uneven bars title and placed third on beam.

She placed fourth in the all-around at the U.S. Classic and won the silver medal in the all-around at the National Championships, behind Nastia Liukin. She was named to the U.S. team for the Pan American Championships, where she won the all-around title and individual gold medals on beam and bars.

Memmel was named to the 2005 World Championships team, along with Liukin, Alicia Sacramone, and Jana Bieger. At Worlds, she won the all-around title by 0.001 over Liukin.[12] This made her the third American woman, and the first since 1994, to win the all-around at the World Championships.[13] She also won silver medals on balance beam and uneven bars.

After her success at the 2005 Worlds, Memmel decided to turn professional, thereby giving up her NCAA eligibility.

2006 edit

Memmel began 2006 at the Pacific Alliance Championships, where she tied with Liukin in the all-around. She injured her shoulder while training a bail at the competition, and decided not to attend the U.S. Classic. Two weeks later, she competed watered-down[citation needed] routines at the National Championships, where she placed fourth in the all-around.

At the World Championships, Memmel qualified first for the all-around finals and also made the uneven bars and floor event finals. In the team final, she re-aggravated her shoulder injury on her bail, and faltered on the balance beam when she landed a front tuck with one foot completely off the beam. She withdrew from the all-around and event finals because of her injury.

2007 edit

Memmel was still recovering from her shoulder injury in August 2007, when the National Championships were held. She competed only on floor exercise on the first day of the competition, and did not compete at the 2007 World Championships.

She made her all-around comeback at the Good Luck Beijing International Invitational, a test meet for the 2008 Olympic Games in which the gymnasts competed in the same arena and on the same equipment that would be used at the Olympics. Memmel placed fifth in the all-around and third on beam, where she performed new skills, including a front aerial to prone mount. She did not qualify to the uneven bars final.

After the Beijing test event, Memmel competed at the Toyota Cup in Toyota, Japan, where she won the gold medal on floor exercise and the silver on balance beam.

2008 edit

In June 2008, Memmel placed third in the all-around at the National Championships, behind Liukin and Shawn Johnson. She competed a new, upgraded floor routine that included the Dos Santos skill she had competed in earlier years.

At the U.S. Olympic Trials, held two weeks after Nationals, she performed well on bars and beam, received a standing ovation for her floor routine on the second night of competition,[14] and was named to the Olympic team selection camp at the Karolyi Ranch in New Waverly, Texas. At the camp, despite giving herself whiplash and having to stop in the middle of her floor routine, she competed on beam later the same day. On the final day of the selection camp, she landed a double-twisting Yurchenko vault for the first time in competition since 2006. She was named to the Olympic team along with Johnson, Liukin, Samantha Peszek, Sacramone, and Bridget Sloan.

On August 3, 2008, USA Gymnastics announced that Memmel had suffered a minor ankle injury during training in Beijing[15] and would compete only on the uneven bars.[16] She fell in the preliminary round but performed a clean routine in the team finals.[17] Later, it was revealed that she had competed on a broken ankle, a more serious injury than previously disclosed.

2011 edit

On July 23, 2011, Memmel returned to competition at the U.S. Classic in Chicago, where she won the silver medal in the all-around with a total score of 56.95.[18] She placed fourth on floor (13.65) and fifth on balance beam (14.7), and tied with Bridgette Caquatto for fifth on vault (14.2).[19]

At the National Championships in Saint Paul, Minnesota, in August, Memmel earned the silver medal on balance beam with a two-night score of 30.[20] She finished night one of the competition in third place all-around (57.35), with a first-place finish on beam (15.25).[21] On night two, she slipped to an eighth-place finish in the all-around (109.85)[22] after she dislocated her shoulder during her bars routine and did not finish the routine.[23]

She took part in two Worlds selection camps at the Karolyi Ranch, but, as in 2003, she was named to the Pan American Games team instead of the World Championships team.[24] She subsequently withdrew from the Pan American Games team to continue rehabilitating her injured shoulder.[25] Soon after her return from the second selection camp, she underwent surgery to repair a torn biceps tendon near her right shoulder.[26][27]

2012 edit

Memmel underwent a second surgery on her shoulder in February and resumed training shortly thereafter to try to make the 2012 Olympic team. She competed only on balance beam at the U.S. Classic, and fell twice, scoring an 11.95. The selection committee declined her petition to compete at the National Championships.[28]

On November 14, 2012, Memmel announced her then-retirement from gymnastics. [29]

2020 comeback edit

In April 2020, Memmel began more structured training[a] after posting a video on social media of herself performing her double pike beam dismount with a message saying “the seed has been planted.”[30][31][32] Memmel confirmed her comeback as an elite gymnast on July 31 via YouTube.[33][34][35]

Memmel made her elite competition comeback at the 2021 U.S. Classic in May.[36] Memmel competed on vault, scoring an 13.750, and balance beam, scoring an 11.800.[37] This was Memmel's first competition in nine years.[38] In August, Memmel announced that she would be joining Simone Biles' Gold Over America Tour.

U.S. National Team coach edit

In May 2022, Memmel was named "technical lead" for the U.S. National women's artistic gymnastics team.[39] In this role, she works with the top gymnastics to design routines that maximize their potential scores under the current code of points.[40] She also chooses which gymnasts compete on which events in team competitions, helping coach the U.S. team to a world championship in 2022.[41]

Personal life edit

Memmel married Kory Maier, a mechanical engineer, in August 2013. They have two children: a son, Dashel Dean Maier, born in February 2015 and a daughter, Audrielle Ruth Maier, born in November 2017.[42][43]

Routines and skills edit

Eponymous skills edit

Memmel has one eponymous skill listed in the Code of Points.[44]

Apparatus Name Description Difficulty[b] Notes
Floor exercise Memmel 2/1 turn (720°) with free leg held upward in 180° split position D Also referred to as a double Y turn

Competitive routines edit

Memmel performed the following skills in competition (difficulty values from the 2005–08 Code of Points)

Vault edit

Double-twisting Yurchenko (2005–06, 2021; 5.8 difficulty); 1.5-twisting Yurchenko (2003, 2007–09; 5.4 difficulty); full-twisting Yurchenko (2011, 2021; 5.0 difficulty)

Uneven bars edit

Jump to mount on high bar; kip, cast to handstand (KCH) (B) + clear hip circle to Tkatchev (Hindorff) (E) + Pak salto (D); KCH (B) + stalder Shaposhnikova (Chow) (D) + overshoot to handstand (D) + stalder shoot up to high bar (Ray) (C); KCH (B) + toe-on circle (C) + giant 1/1 (C) + Tkatchev (D); KCH (B) + giant 1/2 (B) + jam to handstand (Luo) (E) + tucked double front dismount (D). 7.0 difficulty.

Balance beam edit

Stoop to rear support mount (A); split jump (A) + wolf jump (A); piked Barani (front pike 1/2, takeoff from two feet) (Memmel) (F); switch split leap (C) + back tuck (C); standing Arabian (F); illusion turn (D); front tuck (D) + back handspring step-out (B) + layout step-out (C); front aerial walkover (D); free aerial cartwheel (D); round-off (B) + double pike dismount (E). 6.9 difficulty.

Floor exercise edit

Round-off + back handspring + piked Arabian double front (Dos Santos I) (F); round-off + back handspring + double layout (F); double turn with leg held in split (Memmel) (D); switch split ring leap (C) + split leap 1/1 (C); round-off + back handspring + back layout 5/2 (D) + front layout (B); straddle jump 3/2 (C); round-off + back handspring + back layout 2/1 (C); round-off + back handspring + double pike (D). 6.3 difficulty.

Competitive history edit

Year Event Team AA VT UB BB FX
2000 American Classic 7
Puerto Rico Cup        
USA vs. France    
2002 American Classic 10 4 8
Intl Gymnastics Championships    
Podium Meet 9 4
U.S. Classic 4 9    
USA Gymnastics Championships   5    
USA/Mexico Friendship Competition      
2003 American Classic      
Pacific Challenge (USA/CAN/AUS)    
National Podium Meet   5 5  
USA Gymnastics Championships 10 7 6
Pan American Games        
World Championships   8   6
2004 American Cup  
Pan American Championships    
World Cup Final  
2005 American Cup    
Pan American Championships        
U.S. Classic 4 7     14
USA Gymnastics Championships        
World Championships      
2006 Pacific Alliance Championships        
USA Gymnastics Championships 4 5 4  
World Championships  
2007 U.S. Classic 5
Good Luck Beijing Intl Tournament 5    
Toyota Cup    
2008 Friendship International Exchange     5
USA Gymnastics Championships     4 4
Olympic Trials        
Olympic Games  
2009 USA Gymnastics Championships 8
2011 U.S. Classic   5 6 5 4
U.S. National Championships 8   6
2012 U.S. Classic 21
did not compete from 2013–2020
2021 U.S. Classic 29
U.S. National Championships 26 13

Notes edit

  1. ^ As seen on her YouTube channel.
  2. ^ Valid for the 2022-2024 Code of Points

References edit

  1. ^ "Chellsie Memmel". Sports Reference LLC. Archived from the original on April 18, 2020. Retrieved July 15, 2014.
  2. ^ "Six-time World medalist, 2008 Olympic silver-medalist Memmel retires from competitive gymnastics". USA Gymnastics. November 14, 2012. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  3. ^ "Olympians At Last." Archived August 8, 2016, at the Wayback Machine July 19, 2008. Accessed on July 19, 2008.
  4. ^ [1] "USA Gymnastics: U.S. Medalists at World Artistic Gymnastics Championships"
  5. ^ [2]"USA Gymnastics: U.S. Medalists at Olympic Games- Men & Women Artistic Gymnastics"
  6. ^ Feidelson, Lizzie (May 4, 2021). "What If Everything We Know About Gymnastics Is Wrong?". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved July 16, 2021.
  7. ^ Retrieved September 1, 2022. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "Chellsie Memmel Biography". Archived from the original on August 8, 2008. Retrieved August 13, 2008.
  9. ^ "USOC Honors Gymnasts Chellsie Memmel and Paul Hamm and USA Gymnastics World".
  10. ^ "U.S. Olympic Team for gymnastics boasts 29 world medals, one Olympic medal". 2008. Retrieved August 13, 2008.
  11. ^ USA Gymnastics Magazine, USA Gymnastics, September/October 2003, p. 11
  12. ^ "Women's Individual All-Around Final" (PDF). November 25, 2005. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 27, 2005.
  13. ^ "Memmel wins world all-around title".
  14. ^ Barron, David. "Memmel Closing in on Redemption." The Houston Chronicle. June 23, 2008. Retrieved on July 19, 2008.
  15. ^ :: USA Gymnastics :: Home Page ::
  16. ^ Injured Chellsie to compete on uneven bars at Olympics | Sports | - Houston Chronicle
  17. ^ " - China adds fuel and grabs gold". Archived from the original on August 15, 2008.
  18. ^ Presenters Amanda Borden and Tim Daggett (July 23, 2011). 2011 CoverGirl Classic. Universal Sports.
  19. ^ "2011 Cover Girl Classic Meet Results" (PDF) (Press release). USA Gymnastics. July 23, 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 12, 2020. Retrieved July 25, 2011.
  20. ^ "2011 Visa Championships - Women Day 2 Beam Rankings" (PDF). Factsheet. USA Gymnastics. August 20, 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 26, 2020. Retrieved August 23, 2011.
  21. ^ "Women – Senior Day One Results". Factsheet. USA Gymnastics. August 17, 2011. Archived from the original on May 14, 2010. Retrieved August 22, 2011.
  22. ^ "Women – Senior All-Around Finals". Factsheet. USA Gymnastics. August 20, 2011. Archived from the original on May 14, 2010. Retrieved August 22, 2011.
  23. ^ David Michaels (director) (August 20, 2011). 2001 VISA Championships. NBC.
  24. ^ Amanda Turner (September 21, 2011). "Wieber Leads US Women's Team to Tokyo". Retrieved September 23, 2011.
  25. ^ "McLaughlin added to U.S. Women's Gymnastics Team for 2011 Pan Am Games," press release, USA Gymnastics, September 23, 2011,, accessed 24 September 2011.
  26. ^ "Topic Galleries". Chicago Tribune.[dead link]
  27. ^ "Gymnastics | Videos, News & Articles - FloGymnastics".
  28. ^ Dwight Normile, "Memmel Giving It One Last Shot," article,, 16 February 2012,, accessed 6 March 2012
  29. ^ "Six-time World medalist, 2008 Olympic silver-medalist Memmel retires from competitive gymnastics". USA Gymnastics. November 14, 2012. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  30. ^ Armour, Nancy (April 2, 2020). "Opinion: At 31, Chellsie Memmel having fun doing gymnastics, and no telling where that might lead". USA Today. Retrieved May 9, 2020.
  31. ^ "Is Chellsie Memmel Back?". FloGymnastics. April 14, 2020. Retrieved May 9, 2020.
  32. ^ "Chellsie Memmel mulling comeback? These 8 videos show Tokyo isn't out of reach". Gymnastics Now. April 5, 2020. Retrieved May 9, 2020.
  33. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: "Chellsie's Adult Gymnastics Journey: Week 15 Part 2". YouTube.
  34. ^ "Chellsie Memmel feels 'stronger' as she announces comeback to gymnastics". Olympic Channel.
  35. ^ "She Makes It Official: Chellsie Memmel's Comeback To Gymnastics Is A Go". Team USA. August 1, 2020. Archived from the original on August 2, 2020.
  36. ^ "Chellsie Memmel, 32, Comes Out of Retirement After Becoming a Mom of 2 to Compete at U.S. Classic". Retrieved May 23, 2021.
  37. ^ "Biles makes history in return to competition at US Classic". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved May 23, 2021.
  38. ^ "Field set for 2021 GK U.S. Classic and GK Hope Championships, updated event schedule announced". USA Gymnastics. May 13, 2021.
  39. ^ Bregman, Scott (May 26, 2022). "Chellsie Memmel, Alicia Sacramone, Dan Baker to lead U.S. women's gymnastics program".
  40. ^ Graves, Will (June 13, 2022). "Alicia Sacramone Quinn, Chellsie Memmel embrace new roles at USA Gymnastics". Daily Hampshire Gazette.
  41. ^ "U.S. women earn record sixth straight world gymnastics title". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved November 2, 2022.
  42. ^ "Login • Instagram". Archived from the original on December 24, 2021. {{cite web}}: Cite uses generic title (help)
  43. ^ "World Champion Gymnast Chellsie Memmel Gives Birth To Second Child". Archived from the original on July 9, 2018.
  44. ^ "2022-2024 Code of Points Women's Artistic Gymnastics" (PDF). International Gymnastics Federation. pp. 159, 211. Retrieved January 22, 2022.

External links edit