Gabby Douglas traces her involvement in gymnastics to her sister Arielle, a former gymnast and competitive cheerleader, who introduced her to the sport. Soon after, Douglas taught herself how to do a one-handed handstand and was flipping around and off of her home furniture at the age of four.
Douglass has a total of three siblings. Douglas was born in Newport News, Virginia, on Dec. 31, 1995. In 2004, Douglas won all-around gymnastics title at the Virginia State Championships. At the age of 14, Douglas left her home of Virginia Beach to train with top coach Liang Chow in Des Moines, Iowa. Her parents stayed in Virginia with her siblings.