Celebrating Madison Kocian & Kyla Ross

Samantha Peszek is on a mission to discover the secret of some of the best athlete’s in the world — what makes them tick, their commitment to success, and how they build confidence in their sport and in life. Utilizing Samantha’s Olympic network (she really does have cool friends), guests will divulge what it’s really like to compete at the highest level — the struggles, triumphs, and everything in between. You will have an opportunity to learn from some of the best athletes in the world and be able to apply relevant tips to your everyday life!

Sam welcomes to the podcast two very special guests, Olympians Madison Kocian & Kyla Ross. Madison is a 2018 NCAA Team Champion, a 2016 Olympic Gold & Silver Medalist, a 3x World Champion and a 7x All-American. Kyla is a 2018 NCAA Team Champion, a 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist, a 2014 World Championship Gold Medalist, an NCAA record holder with 14 Perfect 10s in 2019, and a 19x All-American. These amazing women are seniors at UCLA, where they’ve experienced some of their most memorable gymnastics moments.

In this episode, Sam, Madison and Kyla talk about the abrupt cancellation of their gymnastics season due to the global coronavirus pandemic. They reflect on their careers as collegiate gymnasts and recall the peaks and valleys of their gymnastics career, including embarrassing and uplifting moments. Madison and Kyla speak to the importance of their club coaches as well as the special place they hold in their hearts for UCLA.

Key Takeaways

  • Introducing today’s guests, Madison Kocian and Kyla Ross
  • Sam takes a moment to thank her sponsor, Tumbl Trak and Right Rice
  • Madison and Kyla share their first memories of each other
  • Madison and Kyla walk through the events that transpired the week their season was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak
  • The thoughts and emotions that Madison and Kyla experienced upon hearing this news
  • Madison and Kyla share some peaks and valleys of this past season
  • How Madison and Kyla have grown and changed throughout their gymnastics careers
  • Madison and Kyla speak to the leadership role they took on as seniors
  • Madison and Kyla’s post-graduation plans
  • Sam takes a moment to thank her sponsors Tumbl Trak and Right Rice
  • Madison and Kyla reflect on their most meaningful gymnastics memories
  • Sam reads off some of Madison and Kyla’s career accomplishments
  • Madison and Kyla reflect on their most difficult gymnastics memories
  • Madison and Kyla reflect on their most embarrassing gymnastics memories
  • The most influential person in Madison and Kyla’s careers
  • Madison and Kyla speak to their relationships with their club coaches
  • Something weird about Madison and Kyla that gymnastics fans might not know
  • How Madison and Kyla want to be remembered as gymnasts
  • Sam asks a lightning round of questions
  • Madison and Kyla reveal one thing people can do to get 1% better each day
  • Sam thanks Madison and Kyla for joining the show

Episode Quotes

“I remember the beginning when they said, ‘Oh, we’re not gonna have a senior meet,’ it was hard just because you look forward to that final moment of competing one last time in front of your fans, And, I just remember Kyla was upset. I don’t think she barely even talked that day and our apartment was just such a weird vibe.” — Madison

“I feel like I grew into who I was meant to be.” — Madison

“Just being with the team and seeing how everyone is so different and has these such big personalities but we’re able to be cohesive and really work towards one goal is something that is super special.” — Kyla

“I definitely wouldn’t have made the Olympic team without Laurent just because of how many injuries I had. And he would always have a plan coming back where it’s not too rushed. And, I feel like not many gymnasts have such a good relationship like that with their coaches.” — Madison

“They [Kyla’s club coaches] honestly believed in me making National Team and going to World Championships and the Olympics. They believed in all of that in me before I even seen it in myself.” — Kyla

“Honestly, I love just competing with my teammates in front of a crowd. It’s one of the best parts of gymnastics. And so, I feel like every gymnast should be able to experience that in their career whether that’s in college or club.” — Kyla

Listen to the Full Episode

Olympic Medalist & NCAA Champion. ❤️ IN // LA Co-creator of the @thegympire Speszekinfo@gmail.com