Beyond the medals and records, Simone Biles has made significant contributions to her sport. She has introduced revolutionary skills that have been named after her, cementing her legacy as a trailblazer and inspiring future generations of gymnasts to push the limits of their abilities.
Championing Mental Health
While Simone Biles’ physical prowess is undeniable, her most significant impact may lie in her courageous advocacy for mental health. During the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Biles faced immense pressure as she contended with the weight of expectations and her own personal struggles. In a moment that stunned the world, she made the difficult decision to prioritize her mental well-being and withdrew herself from the July 27 and July 29 all-around competitions. Biles said she was battling with self-confidence and a case of the “twisties,”— a term often used in the gymnastics community to describe the feeling of uncertainty when a gymnast doesn’t know where they are in the air. The misstep could potentially lead to serious injury.
“I just don’t trust myself as much as I used to,” Biles told reporters after she announced her devastating withdrawal. “I don’t know if it’s age. I’m a little bit more nervous when I do gymnastics. I feel like I’m also not having as much fun, and I know that this Olympic Games, I wanted it to be for myself. I came here, and I felt like I was still doing it for other people. So that just hurts my heart that doing what I love has been kind of taken away from me to please other people.”
This bold move sparked a global conversation about the importance of mental health in sports. Biles’ willingness to openly discuss her struggles has shattered the stigma surrounding mental well-being and has brought attention to the unique pressures faced by athletes. By prioritizing her mental health, the GOAT demonstrated that true strength lies not only in physical prowess but also in recognizing and addressing one’s emotional needs.
Her courage has inspired countless individuals to speak up, seek help, and prioritize self-care. Biles has shown that it is not only okay to prioritize mental health but also necessary, regardless of the stage or magnitude of the challenges faced.
Legacy and Influence
Simone Biles’ impact extends far beyond her individual achievements. She has become a role model for aspiring athletes worldwide, showcasing the power of perseverance, dedication, and self-belief. Her success has shattered barriers, paving the way for more diversity and inclusivity in gymnastics.
Moreover, Biles’ influence transcends sports. She has used her platform to advocate for change, challenge societal norms, and inspire individuals to embrace their authentic selves. Her fearlessness in addressing mental health has sparked a broader dialogue about the well-being of athletes and the importance of nurturing one’s mental resilience.
Simone Biles is much more than a gymnastics icon; she is a symbol of strength, resilience, and compassion. Through her extraordinary achievements and unwavering commitment to mental health, she has left an indelible mark on the world of sports and beyond. Biles’ legacy serves as a testament to the power of perseverance, the importance of self-care and the limitless potential that lies within each of us.
And there’s so much more ahead for the incredible athlete.
In May, Biles said “I do” to her longtime boyfriend Jonathan Owens. The happy couple had a lavish wedding in Cabo San Lucas with 140 guests. The beautiful bride wore four different dresses during the ceremony. Biles told fans during a recent Instagram Q&A session, that it was “kind of dramatic” to wear so many different gowns during the ceremony. “But you only have a wedding once,” she gushed.