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How Simone Biles helped us rediscover humanity in the Olympics

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05.08.2021
By Peter Jensen

Let's not call it redemption or vindication. Those words imply a mistake was made. It's not really a comeback either. That suggests her past success had been interrupted by failure. What Simone Biles achieved Tuesday by winning the bronze medal in the balance beam was something closer to equilibrium, the state of balance.

Prior to the Tokyo Olympics, the 24-year-old was seen as America's greatest hope. Her withdrawal from team and individual competitions changed all that ― a consequence of the dreaded "twisties," a dangerous, disorienting condition in which a gymnast loses mental focus and sense of body movement in space.

Winning what is almost certainly the final medal of her Olympic career on the final individual event was how she stuck the landing. She is now tied with Shannon Miller as the most decorated Olympic gymnast in U.S. history, but given that Biles has more gold medals (four to Miller's two), the title "greatest of all time" is now undisputed.

I like that ending. I like that ending more than if the queen of American gymnastics had torn up the mats in Tokyo, winning golds at every stage, and dominated the competition.

Here's what........

© The Korea Times


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