Simone Biles Takes Step Toward Paris Olympics, Conquers ‘The Twisties’ During First Competition In 732 Days

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Simone Biles is back in a big way. The 26-year-old gymnast made her return to competition on Saturday night and finished on top of the podium as if she never left.

Biles last competed during the 2020 Olympic Games in 2021. However, the well-decorated superstar withdrew from competition and sparked a lot of controversy with her decision.

Her decision to withdraw was considered “quitting” on the United States by critics, especially after she faltered during the vault competition. Others showed sympathy toward her focus on mental health.

Biles pointed to something called “the twisties,” which is essentially the gymnastics version of the “yips” for her earlier decision. It is is a mental block that causes athletes to lose control of their bodies and rotation as they spin through the air, which can be extremely dangerous.

It’s almost like a mythical kind of thing. When someone says ‘the twisties,’ everyone shudders because it’s bad.

— Longtime Oklahoma men’s gymnastics coach Mark Williams, via the Associated Press

The “twisties” forced Biles to pull out of several competitions — including the team and all-around finals. She later returned to win bronze in the balance beam with an altered routine that removed any twisting elements and clapped back at the haters.

Many, if not most gymnasts do not return from “the twisties.” Biles is making a comeback.

Rather, Biles made a comeback.

Simone Biles competes during the Core Hydration Classic at Now Arena on August 05, 2023 in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)

Simone Biles is golden again.

Wearing a black-and-white bedazzled leotard, Biles returned to competition for the first time since Tokyo at the Core Hydration Classic on Saturday in front of a sold-out crowd in Illinois. It marked the end of a 732-day hiatus and she began the evening with some confusion after introductions.

It was the only time all night that Biles looked out of place.

Her beam routine got things started.

She was all smiles after putting it down!

From there, she took to the beam and conquered the twisting dismount.

Biles next moved to the floor and the cheesin’ continued.

It was her vault, though, that inspired the greatest reaction. She threw down a Yurkchenko double pike, which was not even considered before Biles introduced it in 2021.

Biles was not perfect. There were mistakes. She wasn’t always sharp.

Even still, Biles scored 59.100 in the all-around competition to win gold by five points. The crowd went bonkers as she returned to her rightful place atop the podium.

Biles qualified for the U.S. Gymnastics Championships later this month with the win. Her attitude shifted after getting married, she really locked in earlier this year, and the focus paid off.

Not everybody conquers the twisties. Biles is on her way to doing exactly that.

She never closed the door on Paris after stepping away in 2021 and now that is a realistic goal.

Written by Grayson Weir

Grayson doesn't drink coffee. He wakes up Jacked.

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