Eighth Grade Gymnast Looks Ahead to 2024 Olympics

Lexi Zeiss

Lexi Zeiss

Ruby Wray, Staff Writer

This year’s 2020 Summer Olympics are rapidly arriving from a long four years of hibernation. While most of us would be watching the competitions at home on the couch, eighth grader Lexi Zeiss is planning otherwise.  She is devoting 30 hours a week to her rigorous gymnastics training in preparation for the 2024 Olympics held at Paris, France.

Whereas most toddlers were building towers with blocks, Zeiss started her training in the gym at the ripe age of two. She trains at Omaha Gymnastics Academy and leaves at noon from school every day (except Tuesdays where she goes full day) to practice.

Last year, she was a National Qualifier for level 10. Recently, Zeiss earned the title of Elite Junior National Gymnast after working diligently since the sixth grade. To gain that honor, a gymnast has to achieve a very high score set by USA Gymnastics. Zeiss is one of 22 Junior Elites across the country who have achieved that score and the first-ever to come out of Omaha. She is also one of only two Junior Elites to be born in and train in Nebraska.

In the past 18 months, Zeiss was invited to train with the US National Staff. She said she and her family have put forth immense amounts of effort into achieving her lofty goals.

Her goals are to qualify and participate in the 2024 Olympics, compete in a Top-10 rated gymnastics program in college and get an international assignment where she would represent the United States at a meet outside of the country.

Her next competitions are the American Classic in April and U.S. Classic in May.