Simone Biles has been keeping relatively quiet about her shocking Olympic withdrawal, but what minimal social media activity she has engaged in has spoken volumes.
As you likely know, the gymnast decided to pull out of the individual all-around medal events at the Tokyo Olympics after consulting with USA Gymnastics officials following her sudden withdrawal from the team competition on Tuesday. She cited mental health issues.
While the 24-year-old didn’t share her own statement explaining her decision, she retweeted a lengthy statement that seemingly sums up her thoughts — and draws a direct line between the horrendous sexual abuse she suffered at the hands of doctor Larry Nassar and the mental health issues she’s still battling.
The statement, which was written by former gymnast-turned-fitness trainer Andrea Orris, began:
“It makes me so frustrated to see comments about Simone not being mentally tough enough or quitting on her team. We are talking about the same girl who was molested by her team doctor throughout her entire childhood and teenage years.”
Over 140 young women spoke out against Nassar. After pleading guilty to seven counts of criminal sexual conduct, he was sentenced to up to 175 years in prison. During his trial, Simone came forward and added her voice to the chorus of women saying the doctor had molested them. As with many other times she showed nothing but bravery.
Orris continued with the further accomplishments — and trials — of Simone Biles, noting that she was the girl who…
“Won the world all-around championship title while passing a kidney stone. Put her body through an extra year of training through the pandemic. Added so much difficulty to her routines that the judges literally do not know how to properly rate her skills they are so ahead of her time. That girl has endured more trauma by the age of 24 than most people will ever go through in a lifetime.”
The El Lay-based trainer — who is not known to have ever trained with Biles — went on to note that the error made by Biles on vault would have left most athletes with a serious injury, explaining:
“For non-gymnasts, the fact that she balked mid-air and accidentally did a 1.5 on her first vault instead of a 2.5 is a big deal. It’s terrifying. She could have been severely injured getting lost in the air like that. The fact she somehow landed on her feet shows her experience and is incredible. The margin for error on a skill like that is insanely low. A very small wrong move, and career-ending or even worse, life-threatening injuries can occur.”
That’s the main point, y’all. Gymnastics is an incredibly dangerous sport, and being mentally out of it while competing can lead to serious injury — or even worse.
Here’s another breakdown using the actual footage:
After her sudden exit from the women’s gymnastics team final, Simone simply told reporters:
“I just felt like it would be a little bit better to take a backseat, work on my mindfulness and I knew that the girls would do an absolutely great job. I didn’t want to risk the team a medal for, kind of, my screw-up — because they’ve worked way too hard for that.”
But a US official told DailyMail.com that Orris’ message “sums up everything Simone is feeling and wants to say,” sharing:
“The fact that Simone has retweeted it, shows that she agrees with every word that’s been said on her behalf.”
We think it’s safe to say that Simone knows what’s best for herself and her team. Whether she returns to the competition or not, gurl will always be the GOAT!
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