Gregory Bull / AP
American gymnastics superstar Simone Biles says the wave of support she received after retiring from two Olympic women’s gymnastics sporting events has changed the way she sees herself.
“The outpouring love and support I received let me know that I was more than my accomplishments and gymnastics that I had never truly believed in before,” Biles he said in a tweet.
The greatest gymnast of all time suddenly withdrew from the team final on Sunday, after a difficult jump. In subsequent comments, she explained that she made the decision because she wanted to preserve her mental health.
On Wednesday, ahead of the individual all-around final, USA Gymnastics said Biles he would not compete.
The US team supported Biles’ decision. “Your strength and courage to focus on your own good is something we can all learn from,” it is he said in a tweet. “Thank you for being the leader you are.”
Current and former Olympians are also opening up due to the pressures facing the world’s top athletes.
“Simone Biles. Man, what an athlete and competitor. We’ve put athletes on the high stage, but people forget the daily grind, the demands, and all that hype to make a man a day,” American softball player Monica Said Abbott. “Mental health is a big topic right now, probably one that hasn’t been discussed in the past when it should have been.”
Dominique Moceanu, retired American gymnast and gold medalist in 1996, said Biles’ decision “shows that we have our own opinion about our health – let’s say” I NEVER felt like I was an Olympian. “