Daniela Castillo


Daniela Castillo

Coconut Creek, Florida


American Twisters
Coconut Creek, Florida

Qualifying Meet:
Sand Dollar Invitational


Instagram: @danicastle02

Do you have anickname? My parents call me Lala and my friends call me Isa.

When and why did you first become interested in gymnastics? I became interested in gymnastics because my grandfather was always a fan of the sport. He wasn’t financially able to enroll my dad into gymnastics but they somewhat lived out that dream on my sister and I. We fell in love with it from there.

Do you have any good/funny memories from when you first started taking gymnastics classes? I was a very chubby child when I first started and it was something that hurt my confidence back then, but today I just laugh at the memories of me attempting to do a pull over with no experience whatsoever.

When did you decide you wanted to compete? And, when did you want to compete at a high level? What about competition appeals to you? I decided I wanted to compete at around level 5. Competition is enticing and challenging which makes it such a rush.

What is your training regimen? Was that a big change when you made the switch to competitive gymnastics? I’ve been training no less than 5 hours and a maximum of 8 hours a day since I was 5 years old and his hard working schedule kept me prepared for high level competitive gymnastics.

What is your favorite event? Beam

What is your favorite skill? Any Aerials

What music do you use for your floor routine? Ironically, Nastia Liukin’s 2008 Floor Music.

Who is your favorite gymnast or who is your “idol”? My favorite gymnast is Laurie Hernandez because she’s a role model for young woman and an advocate to the idea that working hard can get you anywhere.

How have you grown as a gymnast during your career, both skill wise and mentally? Over the years, I’ve learned to be more confident and not overthink. This mentality has helped me master skills I never believed I could.

How has gymnastics helped you as a person? This sport has shaped me to believe that work ethic = success, which will help me later on in life as well.

If you had to select one life-lesson that gymnastics has taught you, what would it be? That some people will bring you down but they can’t hurt you without your consent.

What are your biggest accomplishments or best memories in your career? My scholarship to the University of Iowa.

What grade are you in school? 10th grade.

Do you want to compete in collegiate gymnastics? Yes, I would like to win a NCAA championship with my amazing University of Iowa Hawkeyes.

What are your favorite subjects, etc.? I love Psychology and Journalism.

If you plan to go to college, do you know what you want to study there? I am planning to study Journalism and eventually go into a career involving legal writing.

What are your goals for the future, both as an athlete and after you are finished competing? I am aiming to be the best gymnast I can be. Whether its continuously trying to beat my all-around score or improving form on my individual events I just want to be better than I was before.

When you’re not in the gym, how do you enjoy spending your time? Do you have any hobbies or favorite activities? I usually stay at home and write music.

What is your favorite food? Sushi

What is your favorite movie? X-Men Origins, It (2017)

What is your favorite book? Witch and Wizard Series by James Patterson

What is your favorite music group? My Chemical Romance

Are any of your family members current or former athletes? Which sports? Father: Karate and Baseball, Mother: Dancer, Sister: Gymnast as well.

Do you have any competition rituals? Lucky charms? I drink coffee an hour and a half before I start so I don’t crash.

What’s on your IPod right now? What type of music do enjoy listening to? How about before a meet when you’re trying to get focused and pumped up? I listen to songs like Katy Perry’s Rise and fast paced dance music like Carnival by Quintino.

If you had to pick 3 words to describe yourself as a gymnast, what are they? Graceful, Artistic, Perfectionist

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