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Laurie Hernandez on Her and Partner Charlotte Drury’s Transition From Olympic Gymnastics to the Arts (Exclusive)

Laurie Hernandez may have retired from gymnastics competition in 2021, but the Olympic gold medalist and her partner, Charlotte Drury, are just getting started.

“Both of us kind of eased out of sports [after the 2020 Tokyo Olympics]. We moved to New York and then got into the arts,” Hernandez, 24, told Us Weekly exclusively while promoting On Location Olympic hospitality packages. “It’s just nice for us to have the chance to explore what else outside of sports we might be into and test out all these different waters.”

Hernandez is an artistic gymnast — who was a member of the famed “Final Five” U.S. women’s gymnastics team in 2016 along with Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Madison Kocian and Aly Raisman — and Drury, 28, is a trampoline gymnast who served as an alternate at the 2020 Summer Olympics.

After the games, both Hernandez and Drury retired from the sport and began dating each other, embarking on a journey that would lead them both outside of the gym and into the studio (and stage).

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Hernandez enrolled in New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts to study drama in 2022, while Drury graduated from the International Center of Photography in May 2023.

Laurie Hernandez Details Post-Gymnastics Life With Partner Charlotte Drury
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

“Photographing gives me the chance to make my subjects feel just as special as I did when I had my picture taken,” Drury wrote of the medium of photography as part of her senior project at ICP. “It’s also an amazing way for me to invite my past into this new future I’m building. It’s nice that even though I’m retired, those skills I honed over the years as an athlete are still serving me.”

Laurie Hernandez Details Post-Gymnastics Life With Partner Charlotte Drury
Jamie Squire/Getty Images; Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

While Drury expresses her creativity through a camera lens, Hernandez has embraced her love of acting. The artistic gymnast is no stranger to the screen, having won season 23 of Dancing With the Stars in 2016 and landing voice acting roles on shows such as Blue’s Clues & You! and The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder over the years.

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Hernandez told Us that she aspires to act on screen in the near future, whether than be in an indie film or a blockbuster.

“I love being able to act and work with scene partners,” Hernandez told Us. “It’s a very different style of art than live performance theater or gymnastics, but still in that similar breath where the pressure’s on, it’s live, people are watching, but you’re also working for something and you get to show the fruits of that labor at some point.”

While the transition from the Olympic stage to the NYU classroom couldn’t have been completely smooth sailing, Hernandez had Drury by her side the whole time, who was going through a similar transition.

“I love her drive and her ability to look at things and think, ‘You know what, there’s a different angle to this that I think somebody’s not seeing,’” Hernandez told Us of her partner. “I love her point of view on things.”

Being retired from competition doesn’t mean Hernandez has to say goodbye to gymnastics forever, though. The gold medalist will be joining NBC at the Paris Olympics in July as a correspondent for women’s gymnastics.

“It’s a very different experience,” Hernandez said of being on the other side of the screen during the biggest gymnastics event in the world. “I’m just excited to share all the love and joy that I have for the sport.”

This year, fans can join Hernandez and all of the Olympic athletes in Paris for unprecedented access through On Location’s hospitality packages. These include premium seats for sporting events, exclusive access to world-class service at competition venues and at iconic locations throughout Paris and even access to the Team USA House.

“More fans than ever before can now create memories of their own,” Hernandez shared about the On Location offerings. “I remember as an athlete [Team USA House] was a place I wanted to go. There were all these little treats and all these other athletes that I would be able to go and meet. And now the fact that the public can go in and experience that as well is a really unique experience.”

Official On Location Hospitality Packages for the 2024 Paris Olympics are on sale now.

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