To this day, I remember being glued to the television and begging my to let me watch just a bit more of the Magnificent Seven compete at the 1996 Summer Olympics. I was 9 years old, and in complete awe of the precision, athletic ability, and confidence this team had. I thought, "if a pint-sized, young girl could win gold, anything's possible." Olympic athletes have long inspired audiences to strive for the impossible, so maybe your future child will be just as ambitious if you choose from some amazing baby names inspired by Olympic gymnasts.
It's also exciting to see what this year's summer Olympics will have in store. My generation had the Magnificent Seven and it's fun to think about the team this current generation is going to have as their own personal heroes. Perhaps what's so special about the gymnastics team, in particular, is how athleticism, strength, grace, and creativity are all combined to produce amazing moments in Olympic history.
So whether you're currently pregnant while watching the summer Olympics this year or you just have a soft spot in your heart for the world of competitive gymnastics, check out these Olympic gymnastics baby names that will be perfect for your future acrobat.
If you remember, there were two girls with the same name on the Magnificent Seven team: Dominique Dawes and Dominque Moceanu. Either woman would serve as a remarkable inspiration for your baby's name. Dominique means "of God" in French and is a great option for your divine darling.
Jacob "Jake" Dalton is part of the U.S. men's gymnastics team for the 2016 Rio Olympics. Interestingly, the name Jacob means "he grasps the heel" in Hebrew, which seems fitting considering one has to be flexible enough to grab their heel in gymnastics.
Shannon Miller remains the "most decorated gymnast in American history," according to her personal website, which is no small feat. Shannon, a grand name for an equally grand person, is a great unisex option. The name Shannon comes from the name of the longest, greatest river in Ireland, the River Shannon.
By now, pretty much everyone is familiar with athletic phenomenon, Gabby Douglas. So it would be no surprise if parents found her name inspiring for their little one. Short for Gabrielle, Gabby means "God is my strong man" in Hebrew. If Gabby Douglas is any indication, your daughter will have all the strength she needs.
Jaycie Phelps competed in all four events in the 1996 Olympics, and she truly blossomed. Speaking of blossoming, the name Jaycie, short for Jaycinta, means "hyacinth" in Greek. Though Jaycinta is traditionally a feminine name, the shortened version Jaycie or even J.C. can be gender-neutral.
Danell Leyva, who took home the bronze in the 2012 Olympics, according to his USA Gymnastics profile, will be competing again this year. Danell, a variant of Daniel, means "God is my judge" in Hebrew and it will be interesting to see what the Olympic judges think of his performance this summer.
Who could forget the moment twhen Kerri Strug landed her final vault on a severely injured ankle? It's no surprise, then, that her name means "ruler" in both Old English and Irish, since she ruled her performance. Also, variations of Kerri, like Kerrie or Kerry, can be used for either a girl or a boy.
Simone Biles is the first African-American gymnast to win the "all-around World title," according to NBC. Her determination, talent, and accomplishments, have been seen and heard around the world. So it makes sense that Simone, the feminine form of Simon, means "they have heard."
Samuel "Sam" Mikulak was the, "first male gymnast to be the U.S. national all-around champion in four consecutive years," according to NBC. The name Samuel means "God has heard" in Hebrew, and perhaps a little divine intervention isn't a bad thing in the world of competitive sports.
In perhaps one of the more unique career turnarounds, the Magnificent Seven's Amy Chow is currently a licensed physician, surgeon, and Stanford Masters diver, according to Paolo Alto News. A legendary competitor, loved by her country, it's a no-brainer that Amy means "beloved" in French.
Though 29 years old seems young to most, Christopher "Chris" Brooks will be, "the oldest first-time U.S. Olympic gymnast in over 40 years," at the 2016 Summer Olympics, according to NBC. That's quite a title to bear, but it seems he'll do so with ease. Coincidentally, the name Christopher means "bearer of Christ" in Greek, so clearly his upper body strength is on point, right?
The fiercely competitive captain of the Magnificent Seven, Amanda Borden, captured the heart of America with more than just her super awesome '90s hair. According to an interview with Vogue, Borden has stayed active in the gymnastics world by coaching with her husband at their gym in Arizona. Similar to Amy Chow, it's no wonder their team was so well-loved seeing as Amanda means "lovable, worthy of love" in Latin.
Logan Dooley is no stranger to breaking records and he may continue that tradition at the 2016 Summer Olympics. According to NBC, Dooley was, "the first U.S. man to win World Cup gold," in the 2009 Trampoline and Tumbling World Cup. The name Logan means "from the hollow" in Gaelic and is a perfect jump off to catapult your child towards greatness.