Dominiqude Moceanu never let youth stand in her way.
An accomplished gymnast beyond her years, she was the youngest competitor at the Junior Pan American Games in Sao Paulo, Brazil, in 1992, where she won four gold medals and was the all-around silver medalist at age 10.
Her international stature only continued to grow as she developed under famed coach Bela Karolyi.
In 1994, she was the all-around gold medalist at the U.S. Junior National Championships and, at age 13 in 1995, she was the youngest gymnast to win the senior all-around title at the U. S. National Championships. She went on to win a silver medal in the balance beam at the World Championships in Sabae, Japan, and was the youngest member of the United States team that earned a bronze medal.
A seasoned veteran at age 14, she was the youngest member of the gold-medal winning 1996 Olympic Team, named “The Magnificent Seven,” as she cemented herself as one of the sport’s elite competitors. She showed her courage and determination at the Olympics as she competed despite a stress fracture in her right tibia.
After recovering from her injury, Moceanu trained under coach Luminita Miscenco and won gold medals in the vault and balance beam at the 1998 U.S. Senior Nationals. At that year’s Goodwill Games in New York, she became the only American to win the all-around gold medal.
Once again, injuries took their toll and she retired in 2000.
Graduating from John Carroll University in 1999 with a degree in business management, she continues to coach and promote her sport in the area and at the national level. She married Dr. Michael Canales, a former Ohio State gymnast, in 2006 and the couple have two children.