Olympian Laurie Hernandez is doing well on ABC's "Dancing With The Stars." Laurie and her pro partner Val Chmerkovskiy have been at the top of the leaderboard most weeks. However, she admits that "Dancing with the Stars" is much harder than she thought it would be. She said she didn't think the competition would be a breeze, but she wasn’t expecting it to be as hard as it is turning out to be for her. The 16-year-old gymnast concludes that competing in a dance every week is a whole lot different than landing on a 4-inch balance beam.

Judges' comments

Laurie is accustomed to practicing long hours to accomplish her goals, and she doesn't mind working hard.

However, she is finding the rehearsals and the dancing on Monday nights are a bit much for her. She has nothing against the judges' comments, but she said they expect the contestants to dance like professional dancers which they are not. She tries to take the judges' advice so she can do her best on the dance floor. By the way, head judge Len Goodman will be back this week after having been gone for a couple of weeks. 

Laurie's upcoming dances

Laurie wants people to know that she is not complaining. She is just stating that her experience is different from what she had imagined. Yes, she thinks "Dancing with the Stars" takes hard work and stamina, but she is sticking with it because that's what she signed up for.

She is really excited about the dances coming up on Monday, October 24. All the dances will focus on a particular era from the 1920s to the 1990s.

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Laurie and Val will dance to 1960s-themed quickstep. After the solo dance, there will be two group dances. Laurie is the captain of her group called the Future Team. All the remaining women contestants are on Laurie's team except Maureen McCormick.

The gymnast is looking forward to dancing in a group since this is the first time for teams this season. Will Laurie have her teammates doing cartwheels, standing on balance beams or doing some other gymnastic routine? Watch "Dancing with the Stars" on Monday, October 24 on ABC at 8 p.m. to find out.