Simone Biles returns to the mat for her first gymnastics competition in 2 years

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By Webdesk

The GOAT is back. On June 28, USA Gymnastics announced that Simone Biles will return to the mat for the first time in two years. The seven-time Olympic gold medalist will make her comeback at the 2023 US Classic, held Aug. 4-5 at the Now Arena outside Chicago. “A trio of Olympic gold medalists top the list of athletes entered in the 2023 US Classic,” USA Gymnastics captioned a photo of Biles, Jade Carey and Suni Lee on Instagram.

The competition marks Biles’ first competitive gymnastics competition since the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in the summer of 2021. Notably, the athlete chose to withdraw from Olympic competition due to a mental block commonly referred to as the “twisties”. . “Not at all how I imagined or dreamed my second olympics would go, but blessed to represent the usa,” she shared in an August 2021 Instagram post. “I will cherish this unique Olympic experience forever. Thank you everyone for the endless love and support. I am truly grateful.”

Leading up to the Olympics, athletes are expected to push themselves to their limits, physically and mentally, with little to no regard for their well-being. Bile’s decision to prioritize her mental health over medals sparked an international conversation about the overall safety and well-being of athletes. In particular, female athletes, including Lee and Naomi Osaka, have been more vocal about protecting their mental health in recent years.

Following her exit from the games, Biles received overwhelming amounts of “love and support” from friends, family and fans. “The overwhelming love and support I have received has made me realize that there is more to me than my achievements and gymnastics that I never really believed,” Biles wrote Twitter in response to the solidarity of her fans.

Since Tokyo, the gymnast has continued to advocate for the mental health of athletes and encourage her teammates. She also married NFL safety Jonathan Owens in April, splitting the event into two separate celebrations in Houston and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

As Biles prepares for the US Classics, fans are hoping her return to the mat is an indication that she and her team will compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics.

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