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The Amazing Grace of Jordan Chiles
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2017 national all-around silver medalist Jordan Chiles is featured in the March 2018 issue of International Gymnast.

The March 2018 issue of International Gymnast includes a feature titled "Amazing Grace." The story is about Jordan Chiles, an Oregon native who trains at Naydenov Gymnastics in Vancouver, Washington. But the title highlights Chiles' grace in gymnastics and also as a human being.

After placing second all-around at the 2017 P&G Championships in her first year as a senior, most people assumed she was on track to make the four-member U.S. women's team to the 2017 World Championships in Montreal. She was named an alternate instead.

Asked why she thought she didn't make the 2017 world team, Jordan's reply included no bitterness: "I don't really know … I really thought I did enough (at the selection camp). I am really happy for my friends, though. Every one of us works hard and deserved to go."

Jordan's mother, Gina Chiles, took the news harder than her daughter.

"The honest answer is we were very disappointed — any parent would be," Gina said. "As parents, we just want to see our kids happy, and making that team meant a dream realized."

Jordan, the youngest of five siblings, will have another chance. She's much too talented. She's one of the few American gymnasts who can vault an Amanar, and she blends powerful tumbling on floor exercise with fluid dance. She’s excellent and beam but considers bars her weak event because of her start value. She's wrong, though. She swings bars quite well.

Coached by Dimitri Taskov, who represented Bulgaria at the 1988 Olympics, and Tiffany Hirschberger, Chiles has a good thing going. She'll break through eventually. And even if she doesn't, her grace may lead her to even greater opportunities.

To subscribe to the print and/or digital edition or to order back issues of International Gymnast magazine, click here.

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