Is Cheryl Burke retiring from Dancing With the Stars? The professional dancer hinted that the end of her time on the ABC reality competition show could be coming to an end sometime soon, citing the toll that years of dancing have taken on her body. Appearing on Monday's episode of Barstool Sports' Chicks in the Office podcast, Burke, 36, said it was "time to hang up those shoes."
"My hips don't lie, and I'm starting to get tendonitis," the two-time mirrorball champion said. "For a woman, as far as ballroom dancing competitively goes, normally in their 30s [they retire]. I'm 36, so it's time to hang up those shoes." She also explained that she'd like to go out while she's on top — which means she wants to take it all the way with partner AJ McLean this season.
"I also don't want to be like that oldie that's like, 'Oh, here comes Cheryl doing the same choreography, just going slow but in her head, she thinks she's going that fast," Burke laughed. "I don't want to, I guess, be a dancer and have my partner having to be like, 'Can't lift.' There's a time and a place for it all."
But that doesn't mean Burke is ready to leave the show altogether; she said she'd "love to" sit at the judges' table in the future. "It would be really great for me just to use my mouth and not my body," the Pretty Messed Up podcast co-host said. "Four judges? It's fine! Just give us each five seconds [to speak]."
Burke, who is currently sashaying her way through her 23rd season of Dancing With the Stars, has won the show's coveted title twice — once in Season 2 with 98 Degrees member Drew Lachey, and again in Season 3 with NFL alum Emmitt Smith. She was also runner-up in Season 8 with actor Gilles Marini as well as in Season 13 with Rob Kardashian.
In addition to the show's new COVID-19 guidelines, Season 29 has brought its own physical challenges for Burke after recently suffering a head injury during rehearsal. "I took a hard fall while rehearsing for [Villains Night]," Burke wrote on social media last week. "It's one of those things that can happen in a split second. Thankfully, I have the best partner I could ask for that was there to pick me up off the ground." Burke fully covered from the scary incident and returned the next day to dance in the live episode, as well as this week's. Dancing With the Stars airs Monday nights at 8 p.m. on ABC.