Simone Biles is among Glamour magazine’s ‘Glamour Women of the Year’ and for good reason. At just 19-years-old, the Olympic Gold Medalist has proven that she is a force with which to be reckoned in the field of gymnastics.
“I’ve been brought up to never take anything for granted and to always be the best Simone—the best version of myself,” the young star says of her stellar accomplishments. “From a very young age, [my parents] always believed in us and told us to believe in ourselves.”
Simone Biles was adopted at a young age after her biological mother’s struggle with drug addiction became overwhelming. Her guardian, Nellie Biles, turned out to be Simone’s greatest cheerleader when the star athlete began to rise in the ranks of skilled gymnasts.
“I am a basket case inside at all of her competitions,” Nellie tells Glamour. “But this was the Olympics—her goal. Her dream. What we had all sacrificed so much for,” she adds. “Simone said to me, ‘Mom, I know you’re nervous. You need to just relax. You need to know, Mom, that I am ready.'”
Simone was more than “ready” as it turned out. The young athlete helped her team, a.k.a. “The Final Five,” with nine Gold medals, which is more than any U.S. gymnastics team has earned in Olympics history.
“She’s special,” 1984 gold medalist Mary Lou Retton says. “You don’t teach what Simone has—a natural explosiveness and power.”
Many are comparing her to the sport’s greats but Simone is focused on being herself. “I knew the expectations were there, but I can only control what I do, not what anyone else wants me to do. You just have to go out and have fun with it,” she shares. “I’d rather regret the risk that didn’t work out than the chances I didn’t take at all.”
Click here for a flashback in time to the Rio Olympics to see why Simone Biles is such a celebrated athlete!
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