Biles is considered the best gymnast of all time, so many people are feeling a certain level of disappointment over not getting to see her do what she does best in the world’s biggest stadium.
Mostly, however, athletes and people everywhere continue to have profound respect for the all-star athlete who is putting her wellness first. She is still nothing short of an American hero. On top of shattering records, becoming the most decorated gymnast ever, having four moves named after her, Biles also helped fight on behalf of abused survivors.
Simone Biles was active during the Larry Nassar trial. He was the former doctor of the USA Gymnastics team that abused more than 150 women, including Simone Biles.
Simone Biles Called a Hero by Mariska Hargitay
She had a massive weight when she entered the Ariake Gymnastics Centre in Tokyo. The athlete has millions of fans, especially considering she is an outspoken advocate for female athletes.
Mariska Hargitay is an advocate for sexual-oriented crimes, both in her role on “Law & Order: SVU” and in real life as well. She posted on Instagram today, “My hero. Warrior. Sending love to @simonebiles #Courage #Strength #Well-being #Self-care #Healing #bravery Humanity G O A T.”
Alongside her touching message, Hargitay shared an image of Biles and some of her accomplishments with the caption, “Simone Biles already won.”
Simone Biles is putting her mental health first. She is skipping out on defending her all-around gold medal from the last Olympic Games.
“Simone will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether or not to participate in next week’s individual event finals. We wholeheartedly support Simone’s decision and applaud her bravery in prioritizing her well-being. Her courage shows, yet again, why she is a role model for so many,” Team USA gymnastics said in a statement, according to CNBC.
Mental Health as a Priority at the 2020 Olympics
Being a superstar athlete means carrying an exceptionally heavy burden on your soldiers. Michael Phelps, a legendary Olympic swimmer, struggled with depression. He empathized with the struggles Biles is opening up about at the 2020 Games.
“We carry a lot of things, a lot of weight on our shoulders. And it’s challenging, especially when we have the lights on us and all of these expectations that are being thrown on top of us,” Phelps said in an interview with NBC News.
At the end of the day, Simone Biles and her Olympic withdrawal is a reminder that Olympic athletes are in fact human. While they can accomplish extraordinary, seemingly otherworldly things, it’s impossible to be extraordinary at every moment.
“We also have to focus on ourselves, because at the end of the day we’re human, too. We have to protect our mind and our body, rather than just go out there and do what the world wants us to do,” Biles said to The Associated Press.
Biles remains a role model, both as a superb athlete and an empathetic human. Other athletes have also withdrawn this year and have been candid about mental health, including No. 2 ranked tennis player Naomi Osaka.