Kate Hansen gets her groove on.
Nothing wrong with that, per se. As a competitor in the 2014 Winter Olympics in the Women’s Singles Luge, Hansen’s pre-run ritual of warming up and stretching out has drawn some attention. Before suiting up, she likes putting on her headphones, cranking the tunes and dancing.
Because why not, right? She doesn’t just get out there and do the Ed Lover Dance for kicks. She’s actually making very specific motions that stretch out certain muscle groups. On top of that, she’s having fun. There’s nothing wrong with breaking the tension before she climbs onto a plastic sled and goes 100 mph down a bobsleigh track on her back. Personally, if I was about to pull of a stunt as insane as Luge, I’d want something a little stronger than Beyonce to break the tension. Johnnie Walker perhaps.
Since her dancing became known, she’s become a bit of a thing on YouTube, as users create their own dance mixes of Hansen.
Like this one:
Or this one, which happens to be my personal favorite:
I’m still waiting for Tiesto to do a remix.
Hansen has drawn her share of the haters, though. Namely NBC Sports Luge analyst, former Olympian, and full time buzzkill, Duncan Kennedy. Kennedy opined that her warmup ought to be something more “sport specific” and serious. Kennedy is also the guy who blamed his 27th place finish in 1988 on some tape — so consider the source. Much has been said about this and how Kennedy should shut his big stupid mouth and let the girl dance.
Hansen seems to have heard about this too, seeing as she gave Kennedy a command performance.
On the final day of Women’s Singles Luge, Hansen took her last run and wound up in the top spot. Of course, this was to be short lived as the favorites were still to come, including Erin Hamlin who took bronze for the United States‘ first singles medal in Luge. Hansen made it to the end of the course, saw her amazing time post and did something pretty awesome.
She grabbed an American flag and proceeded to pop and lock right there at the end of the track.
This is pretty gangster on Hansen’s part as it was obviously directed right at Kennedy. Her dancing was never a thing until he made his idiot comments on TV. A warmup regimen of dancing is one of those things that shows the advantage American athletes have over the rest of the world. While maybe the U.S. doesn’t knock down every single medal every time — we have the most fun by far.
We’re the country that competes with smiles. We’re the ones who show up with flair and bravado. We’re the ones everyone wants to be.
While Hansen didn’t take home a medal this time around, she did something more important than that. By sticking it to Kennedy in the most fun way possible and showing that you can compete on a world stage and still have fun and be silly, she inspired young and aspiring athletes. More so, that is the legacy that will stick around longer than anything else.
When everyone else has long forgotten who won the Women’s Singles Luge gold at Sochi, there will be some girl somewhere who looked at Hansen dancing on TV and said, “Daddy, I want to be like her!”
Dance it out, Kate. We’re all proud of you.