The 20 Greatest Teenagers in Sports History

14. Mary Lou Retton

Sport: Gymnastics

Achievements as a Teen: Mary Lou Retton was the first female gymnast outside of Eastern Europe to win an Olympic all-around gold medal. After winning the US Nationals, and the US Olympic Trials at just 16 in 1984, Retton underwent a knee operation just before the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. She recovered just in time, and proceeded to win said all-around gold medal for the United States, one of five metals she took home at those games. She was hailed for her 1984 heroics by being named Sports Illustrated's "Sportswoman of the Year."

Career Recap: Retton capped her career by being inducted into the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame in 1997. She was the first female athlete to appear on the cover of a Wheaties box and has a gymnastics move named after her called "The Retton Flip," which we're sure is totally suitable for children.

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