Critics took to social media to call out Douglas, 20, after she and her Final Five teammates celebrated their gymnastics final win during their gold medal ceremony on Tuesday. Aly Raisman, Laurie Hernandez, Simone Biles and Madison Kocian all placed their hand on their hearts while Douglas noticeably didn't.
"First I want to say thank you everyone for all your support!" Douglas captioned an emoji of herself via Twitter. "It's a huge honor for me to be able to represent #TeamUSA."
— Gabby Douglas (@gabrielledoug) August 10, 2016
"In response to a few tweets I saw tonight, I always stand at attention out of respect for our country whenever the national anthem is played," she continued. "I never meant any disrespect and apologize if I offended anyone. I'm so overwhelmed at what our team accomplished today and overjoyed that we were able to bring home another gold for our country!"
Douglas has worked hard to compete in her second consecutive Olympics, an understandably overwhelming honor and nearly out-of-body experience. She opened up about her training during an interview with Risen magazine last month.
"People don’t see any training, they only see me out on the competition floor where a beautiful masterpiece is displayed, a beautiful routine, a beautiful leo [leotard/costume], and makeup. But behind the scenes there is a lot that goes into all of that," she explained. "I train six days a week. I have Sundays off and I do about four to six hours in the gym depending on what day it is because sometimes my gym schedule is different each day. And man, it’s just intense. A lot of doing it over and over and over again, it’s just challenging in the gym and it’s very tough."
Douglas previously won gold medals in both team and individual all-around competitions at the 2012 London Summer Olympics.
"I’ve learned to keep going, even when days are really hard in the gym. When I’m having a really hard day I have to keep pushing through because if I can get through that one day — that hard day — then on the easiest day it’ll be that much easier," she continued. "I have to keep reminding myself to just keep pushing through."
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