Who Is MyKayla Skinner? Retired Gymnast Labeled Delusional Hater For Criticizing 2024 Olympic Team

As nations cheer on their teams ahead of the 2024 Summer Olympics, retired gymnast MyKayla Skinner isn't exactly leading the applause for Team USA — far from it. The athlete stirred up quite a storm with her candid take on this year's squad. "Besides Simone [Biles], I feel like the talent and the depth just isn't like what it used to be," she dished in a since-deleted video posted to YouTube. "Just notice, like, I mean, obviously, a lot of girls don't work as hard."

But who is the athlete behind this biting critique? Well, before she was tossing shade at Team USA, she was tossing her body through the air at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. She wasn't initially slated to compete at that year's games, but after Biles came down with a case of the "twisties," Skinner stepped in as her Olympic replacement. She did alright, nailing two challenging vaults to cinch silver, her first and only Olympic medal. She retired soon after, but it seems this year's roster of athletes gave her pause for thought.

According to Skinner, this year's lineup "just don't have the work ethic." Unsurprisingly, her comments drew immediate and near-universal backlash. Fellow gymnast Vanessa Atler derided Skinner's comments as "petty and mean," while Biles — who previously had a good relationship with Skinner — seemingly responded to her comments on Threads, writing, "Not everyone needs a mic and a platform." Cornered and suddenly on everyone's bad side, Skinner deleted the video and issued an apology – claiming her comments had been misconstrued.

Woe is her

After finding herself on a precarious balance beam of public opinion, MyKayla Skinner attempted to execute a 180 and backtrack on her comments — but did she stick the landing? 

"I feel like a lot of you guys had misinterpreted or misunderstood exactly what I was meaning or had said," Skinner shared to her Instagram Story on July 3, notes E! News. "A lot of the stuff that I was talking about wasn't always necessarily about the current team, because I love and support all the girls that made it and I'm so proud of them." She added that she is "seriously so happy" for this year's athletes and "would never do anything to make them feel otherwise," despite having previously done just that. That said, she appeared to offer an earnest apology, adding, "So, sorry if that came out wrong, that was not my intentions at all."

A few days later, the gymnast issued a second, more formal apology on Instagram, clarifying that it was never her intention to smear the athletes or downplay their hard work. "I will be cheering you all on!" she added. We don't know about you, but we're ready to suck it up, accept her apology, and cheer on our athletes as a united front, whether they bring home the gold or see their dreams destroyed on live TV.