Jun 29, 2010 9:59 PM by Jordan Mason

A "Little Athlete" with big ambitions

Little Maddie Larson is dreaming of becoming the next Olympic champion.

The four-year old from Colorado Springs loves gymnastics so much, she doesn't even really like anything else.

"Even when she was three, when class was over, she would cry because she wanted to stay [at practice] longer," said Maddie's coach Kathy Vigil.

She's working on her strength.

"I did eleven pull ups," said Maddie. "I was strong, that's all."

She's working on her flexibility.

I love splits, left leg split because it hurts."

It does hurt, but Maddie is always smiling and climbing on whatever she can find, even at home.

But when she comes to practice, it's all business.

"She's a special little girl because she really sets goals for herself, which is unique for that age," said Vigil. "She comes in and she's like, I'm learning this today."

And if she keeps this up, perhaps little Maddie Larson could someday be just like her hero, 2008 Olympic gold medallist Shawn Johnson.

"I just want to be like her," said Maddie.

Remember, anybody can nominate a Little Athlete of the Week. Just go to and click on the link. We announce a new winner every Tuesday night on News First 5 at 5:00



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