Why did Simone Biles pull out of Olympic finals? Internet dubs her 'mental health hero'
Biles pulled out after a disappointing performance on the vault amid speculation about her sustaining an injury
In a shocking turn of events,Simone Biles has pulled out of the Olympic finals. Dubbed one of the 'greatest gymnasts of all times', Biles' sudden departure from the US final did not have any particular reason, according to a New York Times report, at least officially. But other reports speculated about any injuries she might have sustained after she gave a watered down version of her highly anticipated performance on the vault.
News of Biles pulling out of the team competition at the Tokyo Olympics was shared by Carol Fabrizio, a USA Gymnastics spokeswoman. The news follows Biles leaving the competition floor on July 27, after performing the first apparatus of the night, which was the vault. Biles allegedly bailed out of the vault she had initially planned to do, which was a Yurchenko double pike with two and half twists, and completed the stunt with just one and a half twists, before stumbling her landing.
The US's biggest competitor Russia already has a lead on vault and following Biles' exit, are expected to stay ahead of the US by a long shot. The only way the US can reestablish its grounding with a comeback is through the beam and floor. As for why Biles quit, answers can be found in her most recent Instagram post. Just a day before her disappointing performance on the vault, Biles had opened up on social media about the pressures of braving the finals – something she noted had began with the preliminary rounds itself.
"prelims ☑️ now to prepare for finals," the 24-year-old celebrated gymnast had written in the caption for a multi-photo post on Instagram, continuing: "it wasn’t an easy day or my best but I got through it. I truly do feel like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders at times. I know I brush it off and make it seem like pressure doesn’t affect me but damn sometimes it’s hard hahaha! The olympics is no joke! BUT I’m happy my family was able to be with me virtually [white heart emoji] they mean the world to me!"
The Internet has also deduced that Biles is more careful of the insane moves she attempts for gymnastics, with one user citing an NBC interview that aired hours before her decision to quit. "NBC aired an interview with Simone Biles just last night where she said, now that she’s older, she’s afraid of the crazy moves she does and she’s more aware of how dangerous they are. #Tokyo2020," the user wrote on Twitter.
Others have applauded Biles for prioritizing metal health, as one user wrote: "Can we all give @Simone_Biles a massive round of applause for prioritizing her mental health and bowing out of the team final? It takes an extraordinary amount of bravery and self-assuredness to stare down the barrel of that much pressure and scrutiny and say 'no.'” Another went so far as to dub her a "Mental health hero."
NBC aired an interview with Simone Biles just last night where she said, now that she’s older, she’s afraid of the crazy moves she does and she’s more aware of how dangerous they are. #Tokyo2020— Colin Steele (@colinsteele) July 27, 2021
Can we all give @Simone_Biles a massive round of applause for prioritizing her mental health and bowing out of the team final? It takes an extraordinary amount of bravery and self-assuredness to stare down the barrel of that much pressure and scrutiny and say “no.” ❤️👏❤️👏❤️— Kate Hadley (@ohkatehadley) July 27, 2021
Simone Biles. Mental health hero.— Clare Sanford (@sanforcl) July 27, 2021
The outlet Komo News however claims that Biles dropped out of the finals after sustaining an injury on the vault. Biles allegedly "huddled with a trainer after landing her vault. She then exited the competition floor with the team doctor," the outlet notes. Although Biles returned just several minutes later, she took off her bar gear and hugged teammates indicating she was pulling out.