Patterico's Pontifications


Simone Biles, Gymnast Extraordinaire

Filed under: General — Dana @ 4:35 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Take a moment and consider the amazing Simone Biles :

[Simone] Biles delivered a history-making share on the final day of the World Gymnastics Championships on Sunday, breaking the record for the most world medals earned by a gymnast, male or female, in winning the 24th of her career — a gold on the balance beam.

Then, after the equivalent of a lunch break, she returned to the arena and won another gold — this one, on floor exercise, with a routine that included the stunning, triple-twisting, double somersault that she alone has successfully landed in competition and extended her record-setting world medal tally to 25.

Upon concluding her final routine in what is likely her final world championship, the 22-year-old Biles seemed to take a dramatic pause on the tumbling floor as cheers rained down from the capacity crowd.

But she was simply too exhausted to stand up and walk off, she explained afterward, utterly sapped from 10 days of competition in which she left no doubt that she is history’s greatest gymnast.

“I just couldn’t breathe, honestly,” Biles said after collecting her breath and regaining her smile. “I just couldn’t move, I was so tired. [I felt like], ‘I’m going to stay here because if I come back up, I’m literally going to be breathing like a dog!’ ”

Here is Biles in the Floor Exercise All-around final:

(Note: Despite stepping out of bounds on an over-exuberant tumbling sequence, Biles scored 15.133 points — well ahead of her nearest competitors, who included fellow American Sunisa Lee, 16, who took silver (14.133) in her world championships debut. Russia’s Angelina Melnikova (14.066) took bronze.)

Congratulations to an incredible young woman!

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


16 Responses to “Simone Biles, Gymnast Extraordinaire”

  1. When watching the video, it’s hard to reconcile mass, gravity, aerodynamics, physics principles, with the utter and complete determination and sheer will of the individual.

    Dana (05f22b)

  2. As great an athlete as anyone. Her dedication to her craft should be an example for everyone.

    mg (8cbc69)

  3. Haven’t seen that much incredibly athletic flipping and twisting and spinning since Lindsey Graham circa 2017.

    (Lord, I apologize for that, and please be with all the starving Pygmies down there in New Guinea.)

    Jerryskids (702a61)

  4. Earlier in the competition, a reporter asked Nellie Biles what she was hoping for, and she replied: “I want her to be safe.” It probably wasn’t what anyone would have expected, but it was a perfect Mom response.

    Radegunda (d2a4ef)

  5. Radegunda,

    That is indeed a perfect mom comment. I’m sure Nellie Biles was absolutely devastated when she learned that her daughter had been victimized by the vile Dr. Nassar, so no doubt her constant, overall prayer is for her daughter’s safety.

    Dana (05f22b)

  6. I don’t have particularly keen insights with respect to gymnastics, but from what I understand the sport it is highly unusual for a female gymnast to be this dominant at age 22 considering that the best female gymnasts have traditionally reached their peak at around 16. I would love to see her go out in a blaze of glory at next summer’s Olympics, which I think I have heard she plans as her final competition.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  7. I don’t have particularly keen insights with respect to gymnastics, but from what I understand the sport it is highly unusual for a female gymnast to be this dominant at age 22 considering that the best female gymnasts have traditionally reached their peak at around 16.

    I think being 4’8″ tall must be a big (no pun intended…) part of the secret.

    Together with that incredibly compact frame, she has fully-developed adult muscles and twice the experience (and practice) of some of her competition.

    Watching the two elaborate finishing moves she recently became the first woman to complete successfully in an international competition, I thought about how many times she must have tried and fallen on her head, butt, etc. before she finally pulled them off. It was surely hundreds, and probably thousands.

    I hope she’ll find happiness and success in whatever she does after retiring from gymnastics.

    Dave (1bb933)

  8. 7. You are truly a vile individual.

    Gryph (08c844)

  9. She did her training at the gym in Des Moines. Team mate of Shawn Johnson. 2008
    gold medalist.
    They are great atheletes. Not sure the devotion the sport is worth it. Borders on
    child abuse.

    iowan2 (9c8856)

  10. She should go down in history as one of the greatest athletes of our time. It’s unfortunate that the career length of a gymnast is so brief. What she’s able to do is positively mind blowing. My daughter did gymnastics. Watching Simone Biles in isolation is deceptive because she makes the impossible look easy. If you really want to appreciate her performance search youtube for a level 9 competition and then re-watch.

    Time123 (b0628d)

  11. @7 WTF is wrong with you?

    Time123 (b0628d)

  12. I just deleted an incredibly offensive comment left at 7.

    Dana (05f22b)

  13. lany/perry has been moved to the blacklist. He’ll reemerge with a new IP address and a new screen name, but for the time being he is gone.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  14. I think you should reinstate the comment or also delete Time123’s comment 11, which was directed at lany’s comment and not Dave’s.

    DRJ (15874d)

  15. I don’t want the comment reinstated. I noted at 12 that I had deleted the offensive comment at 7. I think that most commenters understand that when a comment is deleted, the comment numbering rearranges itself. If commenters don’t, then this will inform them that the original comment at 7 was off limits, and subsequently deleted, therefore causing the subsequent comments to rearrange and what was comment 8 is now comment 7 (replacing the deleted one). Apologies for any confusion.

    Dana (05f22b)

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