By: Krystle Crossman
Olympic gold medalist Simone Biles has recently released a book called Courage to Soar: A Body in Motion, A Life in Balance. She speaks about how she got to where she is in her amazing gymnastics career. She talks about all of the people who helped her to get where she is today and even about those who tried to hold her back. One of the stories that she told was from a meet she was participating in where she was not performing at her best. She was frustrated with herself and was walking back to the sidelines when she overheard a male coach speaking poorly about her.
“You know why she crashed? Because she’s too fat – that’s why. How does she expect to compete like that?” This is what Biles heard the coach say about her. She was mortified because she had never thought that she was fat. She couldn’t understand why someone would say something so mean for no reason. After excusing herself and heading off to the side where no one would see her she thought about what he had said. She then thought about the fact that she was a strong person and wasn’t going to take what he said to heart as there was no reason for him to have said it. Biles said at the time it definitely hurt but it helped her to be above the nasty comments that the coach and undoubtedly others along the way would be saying about her. She came back out and decided that she wasn’t going to let it get to her.
Biles says that it is definitely hard for her body to be out in the open as much as it is. So much focus goes into how she looks when she is on the mat because they have to wear very tight leotards that don’t leave much to the imagination. She loves her body and says that everyone is different and unique so she is not going to let the negative people bring her down. She and her Olympic teammates discuss their bodies and self-esteem all the time and build each other up. They all understand that they are built differently but they use their traits to succeed in everything that they do.