Following the birth of her first child last month, professional ballroom dancer Peta Murgatroyd is returning to ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars,” where she will again compete against her fiance, Maksim Chmerkovskiy.
“I am definitely a little bit nervous but I am very excited to get back. I have definitely missed the dance floor,” Murgatroyd, 30, said on “Good Morning America” on Tuesday. “I haven’t been able to defend my title with Nyle [DiMarco], so I want to get back out there.” Murgatroyd and “America’s Next Top Model” winner DiMarco won season 22 last May. She sat out the following season because of her pregnancy. Her and Chmerkovskiy’s son, Shai Aleksander, was born Jan. 4.
Chmerkovskiy, 37, returned for season 23 last September after declaring in 2014 that he was “done” with the show. He had joined in season 2 and sat out seasons 6, 16 and 17, returning in 2014 to win season 18 with Olympic ice dancer Meryl Davis.
He and Murgatroyd, to whom he became engaged in December 2015, share a friendly rivalry. “I don’t know if everybody remembers the history, but last time we were together on the same season, I won,” he said on “GMA.” “I don’t care how many [‘DWTS’] trophies she has. We’ll see what happens.”
Murgatroyd assured she will take care to fully recover from her pregnancy. “I just want to be healthy. It’s going to take a little bit longer, I think, to get back up to the fitness I was doing and had before,” she said. “I think it’s going to be OK. I am going to take it slowly and hopefully I have an awesome [celebrity] dance partner to go through this with.”
Season 24 of “Dancing With the Stars” premieres March 20.