The Gymnast Who Went Viral Wants You to Know She’s African-American and Puerto Rican

Read more

While there’s hardly a gymnastics floor routine I’m not impressed by, Sophina DeJesus blew me and everyone else away when she showed off more than just her athleticism. The half Puerto Rican, half black senior at UCLA injected the sport with a shot of energy through her lively performance. Using the Internet’s most popular dances – the Quan, Dab, and the Whip/Nae Nae – Sophina became a viral sensation. One Facebook post, for example, has been viewed more than 23 million times.

Her impressive routine got her a 9.925 and helped her team win against Utah, according to The Root. I think the judges should go back and add the 0.075 points, because that’s what the people want.

Since the Internet discovered Sophina, she has been, rightfully, soaking up that Twitter praise. But before her amazing performance, she would frequently update her page, where she answers questions about everything from her pets to her teammates.

Her cultural identity is also something that frequently pops up on the page. One time, someone asked her if she would pretend to be African-American to get a scholarship. She replied that she was African-American. In a later post, she further elaborated, “I’m half African American that is, and half Puerto Rican.”