MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — There is a new Olympic sport that will debut in Tokyo in the summer of 2020.

Four Americans will compete in sport climbing, including Minnesota-native Kyra Condie — whose climb to the top didn’t happen by accident.

“My biggest strength in climbing has always been that I’m like really determined and I’ll train really hard to get to where I am,” Condie said.

WCCO met up with the Shoreview native at her home climbing gym, The A in Minneapolis, a gym she actually helped start. Condie started climbing when she was 11. Even when she was little, her dreams were big.

“I definitely had goals that were like national level, international level, from dreams from when I first started climbing,” Condie said.

But when she was 12, she got news from doctors that threatened her dreams.

Kyra Condie (credit: CBS)

“It kind of started getting quite bad and I started doing some Googling, and finally figured out that I probably had scoliosis,” Condie said.

Her suspicion was right on.

“It turned out that it was already at 55 degrees, which is already past the point when they start recommending surgery,” Condie said.

She underwent major back surgery soon after her diagnosis.

“So I have vertebra T2 to T12, so 10 vertebrae, all fused together,” Condie said.

She took four months off to heal, and has not turned back since.

“That’s when I really started to take it up a notch and start like really focusing on training,” Condie said.

That focus fueled her success, helping her win youth nationals multiple times and doing well at world cups for years. It all led up to her proudest accomplishment to date, which happened last month in France.

“The biggest milestone definitely is qualifying for the Olympics in November,” Condie said. “I was elated.”

Condie will be one of four Americans competing in the first-ever Olympic sport climbing competition. And the competition will be steep — but that’s where Condie shines.

“It’s going to be an amazing experience,” she said.

Condie will compete in Tokyo in early August. She says she is looking forward the most to meeting the other Olympic athletes.

Erin Hassanzadeh

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