Simone Biles is not done yet.
The 24-year-old gymnast is planning to return to compete in the balance beam final on Tuesday — the last event of the women’s gymnastics meet — USA Gymnastics announced.
Biles had previously withdrawn from individual events last week — all-around, vault, floor, uneven bars — citing mental health concerns.
The four-time Olympic gold medalist attempted to perform her planned vault but she fell a full twist short of completion and landed awkwardly, resulting in a low score.
Biles said she “didn’t know where I was in the air” — a common problem gymnasts refer to as “the twisties” when trying to make extremely difficult moves.
Her lack of air awareness, coupled with the anxiety and stress she felt to win, compelled her to withdraw.
“These Olympic Games, I wanted it to be about myself,” she said last week. “And I came in and I felt I was still doing it for other people and it hurts my heart that doing what I love has been taken away from me to please other people. … ‘I am not in the right headspace. I am not going to lose a medal for this country and these girls because they’ve worked way too hard to have me got out there and lose a medal.’”
It is still possible Biles may choose not to compete in the balance beam final in the last minute. The balance beam is considered her weakest event — qualifying seventh of eight competitors and unlikely to medal.
Yet, for Biles, competing in the event may be much bigger than winning a medal.