The Girl Who Defies Gravity
Updated: Sep 3, 2022
Lessons to Learn From Simone Biles: The Greatest Gymnast to ever do it!
When asked how she could leap and swirl with feather-like freedom, she replied with a gleeful smile
"Because I can" - Simone Biles
If gymnastics were a Queendom, Simone Biles is the Queen of the territory. Already the most decorated gymnast in the world, Biles is in the habit of breaking historic records and setting the bar far up in the sky.
Simone Arianne Biles has never failed to deliver a sensational performance that leaves spectators desperate to sight her majesty the Queen again.
Owning The World Stage
Simone started her career at the young age of six when she was taken in by her grandparents in Houston, Texas. After 11 years under her first coach, she won her first gold medal at the Women's Junior Olympic National Championships in 2010.
Breaking into the elite competition in 2013, Simone simply dominated the sport, winning three consecutive all-around titles. Biles is the gymnast with the most World medals (25) and most World gold medals (19), and she is only 24!
But her remarkable career went through a lot of hardships. She had to move into a different environment when she was only 3 years old, but even at such a young age, she showed absolute resilience.
In 2016, the world star confidently admitted to taking medications to treat her Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) during the Olympics. It was later revealed that Simone obtained an official medical exemption that allowed her to take the medication.
Although some questioned her ability to thrive, she showed the world what she was made of, Pure Black Magic!
Taking a break
After her extraordinary display in Rio, Simone decided to take a break from gymnastics in 2017 to "go out, have fun, and really just embrace the moment that we have" she said.
During this brief hiatus, Simone co-authored an autobiography together with Michelle Burford. In the first week of January, the book hit the top spot as New York Times bestseller.
In the autobiography 'Courage to Soar: A Body in Motion, A Life in Balance', Simone shared her inspiration and love to the world.
Why Simone Withdrew From 2021 Tokyo Olympics
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games were delayed to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic that brought the world to a confusing halt.
On July 23rd, the opening ceremony kick-started the 2021 Olympic Games in Tokyo. The stage was all set up for yet another great event. Old records are about to be broken and new ones about to be set.
Just a few days into the biggest sporting event in the world, Simone shook the audience with news of her withdrawal from the competition.
At first, it was stated that Simone was sidelined by a 'medical issue', but later it was revealed that Miss Biles was dealing with mental health concerns.
Simone took to Instagram to say that " her mind and body are simply not in sync" since arriving at the Olympics. This condition, called 'twisties' are popular among gymnasts.
'Twisties' describes a condition in which a person experiences disturbance of the sense of the position of the body in space, a concept known as proprioception. This condition puts gymnasts at risk of danger when they prepare to land after a jump. Anxiety, stress, pressure to perform, and perfectionism are common causes of 'twisties'.
But lucky enough for our super-woman and spectators, she was later announced fit enough to participate in the last remaining event, the balance beam.
Even with her recovery, Simone won the bronze medal that makes a total of seven Olympic medals of her career.
Lessons to learn from Miss Biles
Looking at her remarkable journey to an extraordinary career, Simone Biles gave the world legendary performances and several lessons to learn. Here are a few:
Preparation unleashes the genius: Simone Biles prepared not only her body, but also trained her mind to succeed. She believed and affirmed herself through her journey.
Self-belief: In 2016, 'naysayers' doubted Simone due to her ADHD issues. But no, that didn't stop her. She leaped and swirled to their amazement because her self-belief simply overpowered their doubts. Once you believe in yourself, the world can only watch and applaud while you do it.
Sacrifice: During the most recent Olympic Games, Simone didn't want to let her team and country down. She gave her best but thought it wasn't enough. So she chose to watch from the sidelines. ' 'I can't cause the team' - Simone Biles
Prioritize mental health: Even though Simone did not cart away as many Olympic medals as she would've done, she instead got a Gold Medal for Mental health. She didn't care what the world would think or say, she knew she had to stop. Remember to always listen when your body cries out for help. 'I think it is okay sometimes to sit out even the big competitions, to focus on yourself'- Simone Biles
Take breaks: Our body can accomplish a lot more if appropriately taken care of. In 2017, Simone decided to go on a break for more than a year. She used that time to reconnect with the world and refresh her mind. So after a few battles, take a break to go somewhere, write, or just enjoy a few days of relaxation.
Be grateful: Simone Biles would always look back to thank her grandparents, Nellie and Ronald Biles, her sisters Ashley and Adria, and everyone around her.
The journey to greatness is a tough one, but those who have been through it can provide you with a map to guide you.
Simone Biles is that map and more. She overcame unbelievable obstacles to set a clear path and remind us all what our magic can achieve.
Dear you, survive and thrive, for the world awaits your defiance of self-limiting laws. Leap, swirl, and land on your feet. The laws of physics can wait.
Stay Tuned for more from Simone Biles. She is one Queen to reckon with! The Black Girl Initiative supports women sports.