If Olympic skater Adam Rippon’s dance moves have impressed you on Dancing With the Stars: Athletes, you should know he gets one less day of rehearsal than the rest of his competitors each week!
ET caught up with his partner, Jenna Johnson, at Sunday’s rehearsal for the DWTS finals, where she was practicing solo. Revealing that Rippon does his Stars on Ice show in a different city every Sunday, Johnson explained how this has affected their DWTS rehearsals.
"This has been every week actually so I never see Adam on Sundays,” she shared. “Basically I say goodbye to him Saturday morning and I’m like, ‘See you on Monday, hopefully you remember everything,’ so it’s been exhausting to say the least.”
Despite Rippon’s rigorous schedule, Johnson praised her partner for his ability to juggle his various commitments.
“I don’t know how he’s doing that. He’s such a champion and a trooper,” she said of the Olympian. “Never has he complained, I will let you know, he has not complained once. He wants to perform for the skating fans and then perform for America, so it’s been tiring.”
The 24-year-old pro dancer noted that though she’s taught Rippon some dance moves, he’s been teaching her as well.
“It’s been such a learning experience for sure. I think I’ve learned the most from Adam actually and you know I think America was enamored by his ability to remain himself and I think that’s why we fell in love with him,” she said in praise of her partner. “He’s really taught me to be confident in myself and I found this new charisma about what I offer and what I bring to the table, and I’m so, so grateful I was partnered with him.”
This year’s finale could actually win Johnson her first-ever mirror ball trophy, or it could go to fellow pro Sharna Burgess, who is partnered with Josh Norman.
“Of course I would love to get my first mirror ball, that would be amazing, but it’s so exciting because it will be someone’s first time, so it’s exciting either way,” Johnson said, noting that this would also be Burgess' first win.
So what can fans expect from Johnson and Rippon in the finale?
“We have a really fun, just playful jazz[number] coming for our first dance and then I think we’re going to do something no one’s really seen on the show before for our freestyle, so that’s my tease,” Johnson shared. “Yeah, we have some fans, and it’s just gonna be a blast.”
As for how she's feeling ahead of the finale, Johnson confessed, "I have so many mixed emotions. I'm so excited for tomorrow. I'm devastated that it's over tomorrow."
The Dancing With the Stars: Athletes season finale airs Monday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.