It should come as no surprise that some of the contestants on Dancing with the Stars see major transformations during their time on the show — both physically and mentally.
From learning the new dance moves to the intense training each week, being a contestant on this show seems to be more like a high-demand job than just a fun time. From the early seasons to more recently, many celebrities have come out of their time on Dancing with the Stars with a new body and a new outlook on their own lifestyles. So let’s take a closer look at some of these celebrities and their major transformations.
Kelly Osbourne was on the ninth season of Dancing with the Stars and earned third place overall. Throughout the season, Osbourne worked hard to make it to the next week. These efforts paid off.
The star lost weight throughout the competition, but she gained something even more important — new confidence. She spoke to this emotional change with Access Hollywood, sharing, “By picking up the phone and voting for me every week and all the amazing things they said gave me the confidence to keep going at something that I was so scared and so terrified to do…. I did my first bikini shot that I’ve ever done in my life and it was one of the most fantastic experiences…. It was a bit of an emotional rollercoaster because I never thought that would be me or I’d ever look like that.”
And Osbourne didn’t stop when the competition was over. Her dancing partner Louis van Amstel kept her inspired. She continued, “What definitely got me started was Dancing with the Stars, but then I went to Louis’ dance classes…. Louis taught me how to work out, he taught me how to look after myself and eat right, and then I got a trainer and it just went from there, but he is the one that started it all for me.”
Ricki Lake could be found on season 13 of the show, dancing with pro Derek Hough. While she did not win the whole competition, coming in third place, Lake felt like a winner for different reasons; she lost more than 20 pounds and went down several dress sizes, according to Access Hollywood.
She shared during the interview just how quickly she saw results from dancing. While still competing on the show, she said, “I’ve lost 12 inches in three weeks…. Every time I go for the costume fitting each week, it’s smaller and smaller. I’m feeling great. I’m putting in the work. I’m getting a lot of sleep. Everything is on the backburner right now. Dancing is my priority.”
Marie Osmond gave everything she had on the dance floor. This is evident from the scary moment when the star fainted on live television, after pushing herself in her dance that week.
She continued to push herself and saw success, reaching 3rd place in season 5 of Dancing with the Stars. Working so hard, Osmond saw a major body transformation on the show, losing over 30 pounds. She spoke with OK! magazine (via Today) about her weight loss, sharing, “I’m down 31 pounds so far. I’ve lost about five inches off my hips and five inches off my waist…. I’ve added muscle mass and I am much more toned. It’s incredible. The show should be called ‘Dancing With the Starved’!”
Amber Rose was on Dancing with the Stars for six weeks in season 23. Even in that short time, the star saw a transformation, both physically and emotionally. On her podcast, Loveline With Amber Rose (via E! Online), she spoke to her fast weight loss, explaining, “People don’t understand how much work goes into it…. You’re with your partner four to five hours a day. Then you get home, you’re on the phone with them, like, what you need to work on, what you need to do.”
Rose’s emotional transformation took place when she felt she was being criticized for the shape of her body by one of the judges. She later spoke of this on her podcast (via E! Online), saying, “Last night was like, they did the commentary, and I, it was a point in the dance where I had to lift my leg up and Maks [Chmerkovskiy] dipped me & [Julianne] said, ‘Oh, I’m uncomfortable,’ and instantly I felt, I did feel body shamed…. You know, all the beautiful professional dancers that are on Dancing With the Stars, I mean they dress very sexy and they do the splits and they grind up on these guys and they look absolutely stunning and get a standing ovation. And me, and my body, my hips, my a**, my breasts made her uncomfortable.” Rose moved forward, and left it all on the dance floor.
Getty Images / ABC/Eric McCandless
One star saw a major transformation before the show even began. According to People, Drew Scott lost 27 pounds during just pre-show training. A contestant on season 25 of Dancing with the Stars, Scott was excited about the transformation, sharing with People, “I haven’t been this trim in probably 15-20 years and I feel great…. Who knew dancing was such an amazing workout!”
But it’s not just the dancing that had an effect. Scott took this competition seriously, making huge changes to his eating habits as well. He told the magazine, “Our filming schedule is crazy busy, which means not always getting the chance to eat well and workout regularly…. However upon agreeing to do DWTS, I started cutting out any of the bad foods (pizza…I miss you!!), reduced the size of meals I was eating and started doing more regular weight training, cardio and yoga.”
Getty Images / ABC/Eric McCandless
Sasha Pieterse was a contestant on season 25 who came onto the show with a goal of losing weight. As reported by E! Online, the star revealed in an episode of Dancing with the Stars that she had gained almost 70 pounds in two years due to polycystic ovary syndrome, a hormone disorder commonly referred to as PCOS.
She described this difficult time while she was on the show, sharing, “[It was] one of the hardest things I’ve ever been through…. I had no idea what was going on and I didn’t have any way of solving it…. Now, I’m seeing results…. I think most importantly, I’m feeling like me again.” The star lost 15 pounds during the season and said feeling like herself “means the world.”
Kyle Massey came into the competition believing he could lose the weight. The season 11 celebrity contestant shared with People, “It’s crazy to think you’re going to come into a competition like this and not lose weight with the hours you’re going to have to put in…. I know I’m going to keep losing weight as long as I’m on this show.”
And he was right. The star lost 18 pounds and landed second place in the competition. And he didn’t see an end to the healthy lifestyle after the show, telling In Touch Weekly, “I’ve just changed everything…. When your body’s used to just working every day, seven days a week, your body just gets into a rhythm. It’s going to be harder to stop the rhythm.”
It’s not just the celebrities who have had body transformations over the years, but the dancers as well. Cheryl Burke in particular saw transformations, by gaining and losing weight. And unfortunately, being in the spotlight, she received negative feedback from fans due to these changes.
In 2011 she spoke with Access Hollywood about her weight gain and the critical feedback she received, sharing, “Well, at the end of the day, it was towards the middle of a season where I had to put a smile on my face and pretend it didn’t affect me, but it really did…. I mean, when you’re on blast like that and people are calling you fat, it’s just humiliating.”
The dancer eventually lost weight, getting into a healthier lifestyle. She spoke to this change with People in 2014, saying, “When you change your lifestyle, your body changes. I’m completely healthy. My curves are never going to go away. Have I lost weight? Absolutely. But not in an unhealthy way. I want everyone to know that. I love my fans. But words are hurtful, especially coming from people you think always have your back.”
Wanya Morris was inspired to go on Dancing with the Stars when he saw Joey Fatone on the show and his transformation over the weeks. As Morris told Good Morning America, “When I saw him [Fatone], I was like, ‘Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, definitely… I could do this. I could do it,’…. I was a big guy, you know what I mean. And I remember Joey being a big guy. And he lost so much weight. And he looked great.” The star definitely found his own inspiration, making it to the semifinals of season 22 and losing 15 pounds along the way.
Kirstie Alley has one of the most well-known transformations. As reported by E! Online, the star has lost 100 pounds over the years. And what is a major cause for this? Dancing.
The star earned second place during season 12 of the show, and saw results from the beginning to the end of the season. Before the finals, Alley spoke with People about seeing results, sharing, “We’re doing our dance tomorrow, and you have to wear the costume you wore [during] the first dance that you did…. We had to take a lot of inches out of that costume, which was fun.”
The star lost so much weight that there were questions as to whether she had surgery. Alley stopped those rumors fast, tweeting (via E! Online), “Thank you for all your SWEET comments…NO surgery, NO flippin lasers, NO barfing, NO starving…Jeez…my products, organic food, dance.”