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These Are the 9 Best Gymnastics Movies to Watch While You Have Olympic Fever

After being delayed for a whole year (thanks pandemic!), the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games are in full swing. Naturally, this means it’s time to obsess over Team USA’s women’s gymnastics team. Every four years, it’s a literal joy to learn everything there is to know about the sport—and then immediately forget it—when the girls are done competing. Amirite or amirite??

While watching gymnastics competitions and cheering on Team USA has been just so exciting, let’s be real—you’re probably craving some *ahem* supplementary Olympics viewing material, if you will. Whether you’re looking to learn more about gymnastics history or zone out to a frothy gymnastics-themed comedy, there’s a movie for you in this list (compiled for you convenience) below!

Stick It

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This legendary 2006 comedy starts Missy Peregrym as a rebellious teen who is forced to return to competitive gymnastics after committing a crime (LOL, just go with it). Jeff Bridges co-stars as her coach, while Vanessa Lengies plays a rival who says the iconic and meme-able line, “It’s not called gymnicetics.” Consider it required viewing!

Full Out

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Full Out tells the true story of Ariana Berlin (played by Ana Golja aka THE Zoë Rivas in Degrassi: Next Class), an elite gymnast who had Olympic dreams but is sadly injured in a car accident. After thinking she won’t be able to recover, Berlin is able to find her way back to the sport and also help herself heal with a newfound love of breakdancing. Appropriately, Flashdance star Jennifer Beals plays her coach.

Athlete A

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If documentaries are more your speed, check out Athlete A. The Netflix documentary tells the story of the gymnasts who survived abuse from convicted former USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar. The story is told through the lens of the Indianapolis Star journalists who initially broke the story.

The Gabby Douglas Story

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Lifetime’s The Gabby Douglas Story is exactly what it sounds like! It’s a biopic about Gabby Douglas that covers her childhood, her move away from her family in Virginia to train in Iowa, and her first Olympics in London in 2012. Imani Hakim stars as the three-time Olympic gold medalist, while Regina King (!!!) plays her mother.

The Simone Biles Story: Courage to Soar

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Simone Biles also got the Lifetime movie treatment after her 2016 Olympic appearance in Rio—which she completely dominated with four gold medals and one bronze, BTW—with The Simone Biles Story: Courage to Soar, based on her official autobiography. Jeanté Godlock stars as Biles in the film, which begins with her childhood in foster care and follows the sacrifices she made to become one of the greatest gymnasts of all time.

Raising the Bar

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If you need something ~wholesome~ to watch with kids around, try Raising the Bar. It’s about an American teenager who moves to Australia and gets pulled back into the world of competitive gymnastics after thinking she stepped away for good. Don’t be surprised if this inspires the little ones to start flipping around the house!

Over the Limit

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Over the Limit is a documentary that follows Margarita Mamun, a Russian rhythmic gymnast, in her quest to win gold at the at 2016 Rio Olympics. (Spoiler alert: she did!) The film also features Irina Viner-Usmanova, a demanding and scathing head coach of Russian rhythmic gymnastics. Coaches…gotta love ’em!

At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal

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At the Heart of Gold is another documentary about the sexual violence committed by Nassar. The HBO film includes interviews with survivors and examines how the abuse was able to continue within USA Gymnastics for so long.

Golden: The Journey of USA’s Elite Gymnasts

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As a bonus movie, there’s Golden: The Journey of USA’s Elite Gymnasts, which was recently released on Peacock. Golden *technically* isn’t a movie, but a docuseries that follows top American gymnasts in the lead-up to the 2021 Olympic trials. The five gymnasts featured in the series include some gymnasts that you’re bound to recognize: Laurie Hernandez, Suni Lee, Morgan Hurd, MyKayla Skinner, and Konnor McClain.

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