After Closing a Bad Chapter, Biles Is Ready to Compete

After the abuses under USA Gymnastics, athlete says this time, 'It's for me'
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 15, 2021 4:31 PM CST
After Closing a Bad Chapter, Biles Is Ready to Compete
Simone Biles gets ready to perform on the uneven bars in the women's all-around final at the Gymnastics World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany, in 2019.   (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, Fle)

Simone Biles has committed to performing in the summer Olympics this year. She's up at 6am for six hours of training, six days a week, for the Games scheduled for July in Tokyo. And she's committed to being even better, though she already has more Olympic and World Championship gold medals than any gymnast ever. In those training sessions, she's working on a Yurchenko double pike, something no woman has attempted in competition before. She'd be the favorite to win without adding anything so difficult. But that doesn't interest her, she told 60 Minutes. "I feel like I wanna see how much I'm capable of," Biles said. "And people always question, like, 'If you're so good and you're so ahead of the game, why do you keep upgrading?' And it's like, because it's for me."

Biles said she's having fun now. After keeping it from her family, she's opened up about being sexually abused by Larry Nassar, the former USA Gymnastics doctor who's now in prison. "It was very dark times," Biles says. She has new coaches, and the days of having to fight off hunger by sneaking into the kitchen at the Karolyi Ranch national training camp—"running with our hoodie up"—are over. "It's not the right training," Biles says now. USA Gymnastics failed her and other gymnasts, she says, and she wants an independent investigation conducted, per 60 Minutes. "We bring them medals. We do our part," she says. "You can't do your part in return? It's just, like, it's sickening." In a statement, USA Gymnastics said, "We recognize how deeply we have broken the trust of our athletes and community, and are working hard to build that trust back." (More Simone Biles stories.)

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