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Nikki and Brie Garcia Get Real About Whether They Want Their Kids to Be Athletes: We ‘Go Back and Forth’ (Exclusive)

Just like mom? While twins Nikki Garcia and Brie Garcia have retired from the wrestling ring, they are unsure about whether they want to watch their kids follow in their footsteps.

“I go back and forth with Matteo. I feel like he’ll be more ballroom,” Nikki, 39, exclusively told Us Weekly of her 2-year-old son with husband Artem Chigvintsev. “Even though I see when he jumps off the couch and stuff that he could be [a wrestler], maybe. But I think, in the end, he’ll probably [do] baseball or soccer, but I would rather him be ballroom than wrestling.”

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Nikki met the Dancing With the Stars pro, 40, during her season 25 stint on the competition when they were assigned as partners — and she was still engaged to now-ex John Cena. After being eliminated in week 7, Nikki and the choreographer later sparked a romance in January 2019. The Nikki Bella Says I Do stars got engaged the following November, nearly one year before Matteo’s arrival. They finally wed in August 2022.

Brie, for her part, is also on the fence about the potential of daughter Birdie, 6, and son Buddy, 2, joining the ring. Brie, 39, and husband Bryan Danielson — who is also a pro wrestler — welcomed their little ones in 2017 and 2020, respectively.

Nikki Garcia Brie Garcia Reveal If They Want Kids to Be Athletes
Nikki Garcia, Brie Garcia Rob Latour/Shutterstock

“I think Buddy [might]. Now watching him, he’s a pretty good wrestler,” Brie told Us. “And I go back and forth with Birdie because there’s a part of Bird where she’s an entertainer, where she loves to be creative and she’s very artistic and loves to do things in front of an audience. But she also doesn’t like to be physical so sometimes I’m like, ‘Hmmm, I don’t know.’ I will say I would be honored if they did, because anytime your kids look up to you and they want to follow your footsteps you’re just like, ‘Oh, my gosh.’”

The Incomparable coauthors joined the WWE in 2007 before winning a slew of Divas championships. Earlier this year, the Total Bellas alums announced that they were retiring from the sport and no longer planned to use their “Bella Twins” stage names.

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“We were just craving a new chapter in our lives and we knew in doing that we had to go back to who we were and who we are — the Garcia twins,” Brie told Us. “And I feel like, for us, the Bella Twins really were a character at the WWE. Now, we were attached to them outside of the ring because we were using the name so much, but at the end of the day, it was a big part of WWE.”

She added: “It’s not only been freeing and it feels like we really have just gained power, but it’s almost like we can do whatever we want without asking permission. It’s like we can just grow and nobody’s going to hold us back.”

As the “Nikki & Brie Show” podcast hosts navigate their next chapter, they have found special training partners in their respective husbands regardless of Birdie, Buddy and Matteo’s athletic futures.

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“Sometimes when we drop our son off at school, I’ll go to the gym with Artem and it’s nice because he knows how much I want to build up my glutes,” Nikki explained. “So he puts me through a little booty boot camp. But he’s so good at training me. It’s like a free personal training sesh.”

Brie noted that Danielson, 42, also helps her with her own fitness routine. “It’s fun because I can’t keep up with him with what he does, and he takes forever to stretch. Like, he does an hour [of] stretching. I’m like, ‘Whatever, I’m already done,’” she joked to Us. “My husband is so great at workouts. And he reads so many books so he knows everything about the body, so he helps me out at the gym.”

The twins also like that working out together is “such a flirty time” to spend with a partner. “He looks so hot when he’s all sweaty working out,” Brie gushed. “So I just think for me it’s a connection in our marriage and it’s really nice.”

Nikki chimed in: It’s pheromones! It’s the same when you start to sweat.”

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