Top Requested Sports Speaker Simone Biles Dishes on Gymnastics Future

Top requested sports speaker Simone Biles is not ruling out a comeback. After famously withdrawing from many events at the Tokyo Olympics last year, the Olympic star, 25, who has become a leading advocate and mental health speaker, hinted that she would continue competing in professional gymnastics.

“Technically, if you would ask anybody in the U.S. that looks at an American gymnast, I’m probably already aged out, but I really feel like leading up to Tokyo, I was hitting my prime,” Biles said recently in an interview.

She also stated that she believed she had "peaked" in 2016 when she was just 19 years old.

“Whenever I came back to the sport, I was like, there’s no way I’m going to get even better than I was because somebody told me that was the best I was going to get,” said Biles.
“You just have to push out those negative views and just keep pushing,” Biles continued. “I want to see how much I’m capable of, how talented I can be. And that’s why I came back, just to not have any regrets if I look back in 10 years. So now I can really say I have no regrets, but maybe I might push it a little bit more to see.”

Biles earlier stated in a November 2021 interview with New York Magazine that the difficulties she has endured in recent years "should have" been enough for her to retire from the sport before the most recent Summer Olympics. Biles disclosed in 2018 that she had been sexually abused by Larry Nassar, a former doctor for USA Gymnastics (USAG). Biles has since been open about the impact of the abuse on her mental health, particularly during her struggles during the Tokyo Olympics.

When Biles unexpectedly withdrew from various individual and all-around competitions at the Tokyo Olympics, her fans were shocked. She eventually revealed that she was not in a good enough mental state to compete. Her decision triggered a discussion on the need of focusing on mental health in competitive sports.

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Biles, who is widely regarded as the best gymnast of all time, says she was under pressure throughout her career to perform at the highest level possible without always taking care of herself. She set an encouraging example for many by withdrawing from the Tokyo Olympics, demonstrating that strength sometimes means taking a step back and looking after yourself.

“So it’s OK sometimes to even sit out the big competitions to focus on yourself, because it shows how strong of a competitor that you really are, rather than just battle through it,” Biles said.

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