Watch Suni Lee Crush a Wild New Gymnastics Skill No One’s Ever Landed in Competition Before

C. Morgan Engel/Getty Images

The 2024 Paris Olympics might still be six months away, but after scrolling through gold medalist Suni Lee’s Instagram yesterday, we can’t stop hoping that it would come just a little sooner.

On January 23, the 20-year-old Olympic gymnast posted a carousel of four short videos of her training. And they’re…pretty amazing. In each, Lee performs a release move from the uneven bars using a reverse grip, catches some serious air, flips, and then twists completely before catching the bar back overhand.

Lee casually dropped the videos uncaptioned, but filled in the blanks for us: The move, which has never been successfully performed before in a women’s gymnastics event, is called the full-twisting layout Jaeger. If Lee can land it in international competition—say, at the Paris Games—it’ll be forever known as the Lee. According to a video posted by Artistic Gymnastics, the Lee is a complete 360-degree version of the stretched Jaeger, which is known as the Cappuccitti (named after Canadian gymnast Stephanie Cappuccitti, who first landed that skill).

It’s such a difficult combo that even other top-of-the-game gymnasts were stunned. “I did this once…then I woke up,” LSU gymnast Olivia Dunne commented. “Are u even real!!! Amazing!!!” 2020 Olympian Mykayla Skinner wrote.

After coming home from the Tokyo Games with some serious hardware—all-around gold, team silver, and uneven bars bronze—Lee went on to compete for Auburn University. She guided her team to the final four of the 2022 NCAA Women’s Gymnastics Championships for the first time before developing a kidney condition in February of 2023. “I kept peeling off the bar. I couldn’t hold on,” Lee told SELF in an exclusive cover interview last fall. “My fingers were so swollen, and I couldn’t even do a normal kip cast to handstand on bars.” At the time, her doctors shut her down from training and she ended her sophomore season at Auburn early.

With careful guidance from her medical team, she was able to make her way back to the gym—she just needed to be flexible and tweak her workouts depending on how she felt. Lee competed in the Core Hydration Classic in early August and the US Championships later that month, though she declined to participate in the US Women’s World Selection Event in September, saying her health was more important.

And that includes her mental health too. Lee said she’s taking it day by day, trying to focus only on things she can control, and seeing a therapist twice a week to protect her mind as much as her body.

Still, Lee’s recent posts—the wild full-twisting, layout Jaeger carousel, and another video from a couple weeks ago showing her flipping onto the beam—hint that she might be looking forward to Paris just as much as we are. The US elite gymnastics season begins late next month with the Winter Cup in Kentucky, and the gymnastics Olympic Team Trials will be held in June in Minnesota. We’ll certainly be keeping our eyes peeled in Paris for a possible newly named skill.


Originally Appeared on SELF