Olivia Vivian competing on floor. Photograph: Gymnastics Australia

Last week, Australian gymnast Olivia Vivian (27) announced her retirement from competitive gymnastics. Vivian competed for Australia at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, where she helped her team achieve a historic sixth-place finish in the team competition. She also competed in the 2005 and 2006 World Championships.

After the Olympics, Vivian moved to the United States, where she competed for Oregon State University in NCAA gymnastics for four years.

A few days after her official retirement last week, Vivian announced that she had accepted a job at Cirque du Soleil, the world’s most famous circus, for which hundreds of former gymnasts and acrobats apply each year.

‘It’s a dream coming true,’ said Vivian, ‘I’m grateful to myself and everyone who believed in me for achieving all of this. To represent my country around the world was extraordinary, I can’t explain the emotions I felt and that will always live in me. Now I can’t decline this offer [Cirque du Soleil], I’m happy to start this new adventure. These have been long months, there was a lot of competition, but I’ve always believed in it, and I couldn’t be happier.’

Good luck, Olivia!

Watch here Vivian’s UB routine in qualifications in Beijing 2008. 
And here, Vivian’s UB routine for Oregon State University in 2011.

By Talitha Ilacqua


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