Simone Biles is back on U.S. soil, back at the gym and twisties free.
The champion gymnast withdrew from multiple competitions at the Tokyo Olympics after experiencing a phenomenon known as the twisties, in which gymnasts grow disoriented while flipping through the air, risking injury upon landing. In a recent interview with People, she said the condition had passed now that she’s under less stress and pressure.
“It’s frustrating because I can do everything again. I don’t know … the stress, anxiety, the build-up or whatever happened, happened,” she told the magazine.
Her coach, Laurent Landi, had predicted this would be the case, she said.
“Laurent kind of called it,” she said. “He was like, ‘The annoying part is we’re going to go home in a week or more. You’re going to go back in the gym and you’re going to be able to do everything.’”
At her first session back at her gym in Texas on Monday, Biles said she performed several flips and twists without a problem.
“I started doing a couple fulls, and on the first one it was literally like second nature again,” she said.
She dropped out of the team and all-around competitions at the Summer Olympics, citing her emotional well-being and the risks associated with the twisties. She won a bronze medal on balance beam, her seventh Olympic medal overall, when she did return to the competition.
Since the Olympics, she told People, she’s been spending a lot of time at her home in Spring, Texas, decompressing with friends and family. She’s been doing light training in anticipation of her headline role with the Gold Over America tour, a performance tour of all-star gymnasts.
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