January 25, 2021

“This is what Black Excellence Looks Like.”

Well damn!

Say hello to Nia Dennis, a University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) senior gymnast who left it all on the floor—literally—during her floor routine this weekend. (Dennis first went viral last year for her Beyoncé and “Homecoming”-themed routine.)

I’m not an expert on gymnastic techniques, although I pretend that I am every four years while watching the Olympics, but I do know what it feels like to watch someone completely in her element.

And Dennis was feeling every moment of this routine.

From the music (Kendrick Lamar, Soulja Boy, N.W.A., and Dr. Dre and Tupac, to name a few) to the choreography (check out the moment where she raises her fist in the Black Power salute) to the energy and confidence, I could not stop watching this celebration of Black culture. And the icing on the cake: her teammates and coaches hyping her up on the sidelines.

The UCLA Gymnastics Instagram captioned the video: “This is what #blackexcellence looks like.”

They’re not wrong.

Check out her viral routine from last year:


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