Simone Biles Epic Comeback: Gymnastics Star Returns to Competition in August

simone biles gymnastics
simone biles gymnastics

The gymnastics superstar wants to compete again in early August at the U.S. Classic outside of Chicago, her first event since the pandemic-delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Biles, a seven-time Olympic medalist and the 2016 Olympic champion will compete in the single-day competition on August 5 at Hoffman Estates’ NOW Arena, USA Gymnastics said on Wednesday.

Following her dramatic stay in Japan in the summer of 2021, where she chose to withdraw from several competitions to concentrate on her mental health, Biles has spent most of the last two years relaxing. As a result, attention has switched away from the games itself and toward the athletes’ overall wellbeing.

She supported her American teammates as they captured the team silver while sitting out the all-around, vault, and floor exercise finals she had qualified for due to what is known as “the twisties” in gymnastics, which refers to when an athlete loses spatial awareness when in the air.

To tie Shannon Miller’s record for the most Olympic medals an American female gymnast earned, Biles returned for the balance beam final and took a bronze medal. She briefly mentioned the Olympics in Paris in 2024 but only after taking a long hiatus.

It’s been something of a whirlwind these past two years. She performed as the main act on her post-Olympic tour in the fall of 2021 and wed former NFL star Jonathan Owens this spring. Jonathan Owens is currently a defensive back for the Green Bay Packers.

The 26-year-old Biles has additionally become one of the most outspoken supporters of athletes having a place to safeguard their mental health due to her position in Japan, which brought attention to the problem. Although opinions constantly change, Biles’ return to the sport she controlled for almost ten years signals a competitor who wants to go on her terms.

simone biles gymnastics
Simone biles gymnastics

One of the major competitions on USA Gymnastics’ annual calendar, the U.S. Classic traditionally acts as a prelude to the national championships, which are this year set to take place in late August in San Jose.

After a two-year break following her record-breaking medal haul in Rio de Janeiro, Biles returned to competition at the Classic in 2018. She only needed two hours to demonstrate that she was still the best in her field, paving the way for another incredible run that saw her win three more national championships and two more global all-around medals between 2018 and 2019.

This time around, things can differ in a variety of ways. In the months leading up to the Olympics in Tokyo, Biles sought attention and emerged as the face of the American Olympic movement in many ways. With the Paris Games less than a year away, she appears to be adopting a more reserved stance. She has primarily avoided mentioning gymnastics on her many social media platforms, choosing to showcase details of her private life instead.

And for the first time, since she became famous as a teenager in 2013, Biles won’t have to carry the weight of serving as the face of the American team.

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Sunisa Lee, who took home the gold in the Tokyo all-around competition, will also compete at the U.S. Classic. Sunisa Lee spent two years competing at Auburn, where she played a significant role in sparking a massive increase in collegiate gymnastics interest.

Lee missed the second half of her sophomore season with the Tigers because of health problems. Still, she is considering returning to the Olympics to win gold on the uneven bars, her signature event, rather than defending her all-around championship.

Due mainly to the attention she received after becoming the fifth consecutive American woman to win the Olympic gold medal, Lee finished third on the bars in Tokyo.

As her fame grew, Biles developed the ability to balance the many demands of her time. As she aims to make a third Olympic squad, a rarity for an American female gymnast, she seems to follow a more measured course. The only American woman to be chosen for three Olympic teams in the previous 50 years is Dominique Dawes (1992, 1996, and 2000).

However, Biles is also participating when it is more typical for top gymnasts to continue competing far into and past their 20s.

Lee and several other elite Americans, including Jade Carey, Jordan Chiles, and Leanne Wong, were not forced to decide between participating collegiately and cashing in on their Olympic success because of the relaxation of name, image, and likeness laws at the NCAA level.

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Carey, the vault and floor exercise world champions in 2022 and 2020, has studied at Oregon State for the past two years. Chiles has flourished at UCLA after winning team silver in Tokyo and adding three medals, including silvers on the floor and vault, at the global championships last year. Wong, who won the silver medal at the 2021 world tournament, has assisted Florida in making it to the national finals each of the previous two years.

After frequently competing since Tokyo, they will all be more prepared when they come to Chicago. Biles, on the other hand, is at a different location. Since she left Japan, she has insisted that she won’t make hasty decisions to win the Paris Marathon. She has also emphasized that she will only return to the sport she once dominated out of passion and not out of obligation.

She still has more decisions over the following 14 months after signing up for the Classic. Finding the balance she mastered while achieving the crossover success only a few Olympic winners can perform will be the key for her.

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Arun has three years of experience as a content writer, lives in Panipat, Haryana, and is pursuing a postgraduate degree in English literature. He is proficient in writing, editing, proofreading, content strategy, and cricket watching. Word from Arun: “Overpower. Overtake. Overcome.”