Dancing with the Stars is never just about dancing.
As NFL star Rashad Jennings, Fifth Harmony member Normani Kordei and retired MLB player David Ross prepare for their final night on season 24 of the ABC reality show, they reflect on how the competition has changed them — and what they hope viewers got out of their time on the dance floor.
“It’s very frustrating every week to start something new and to go through the ups and downs of the show. It’s really hard Tuesday and Wednesday, but then you start to get it Thursday and Friday and then camera blocking on Sunday and then it’s the highest of highs when you perform it on the show,” Ross — who is partnered with Linsday Arnold — tells PEOPLE. “You learn about the journey of teaching yourself something new. I’ve learned to deal with frustration and talk things out. I feel like I’ve already won.”
“I just wanted people to enjoy watching me on the dance floor,” says Jennings, who is partnered with Emma Slater. “I hope people get up on their couch and dance when they’re watching at home. I just wanted to bring fun to the dance floor.”
The singer’s partner Val Chmerkovskiy says she’s “a young woman who is really grateful to be in the position that she’s in. And she’s willing to create art that motivates others — not just dwell on her blessings but really sharing it with the world.”
“I’ve grown so much from that scared girl who started on the show all those weeks ago,” adds Kordei. “I’ve found my voice — and it’s through movement.”
A winner will be crowned on the two-and-a-half hour season 24 finale of Dancing with the Stars Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. ET on ABC.