Tag: black gymnasts

Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas are Headed to Rio to Represent the U.S. | Essence.com

Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas celebrate after the All-Around Final on day seven of the 2015 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland. (PHOTO CREDIT: ALEX LIVESEY/GETTY IMAGES)

article by Sydney Scott via essence.com

Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas will be booking tickets to Rio now that the two have been named to the U.S. Olympic gymnastics team.

The ladies fought hard for their spot on the team and have definitely earned it. Biles is a four-time national champ, reigning three-time world all-around champion, and is regularly referred to as the Michael Jordan of gymnastics.

Gabrielle Douglas & Simone Biles Bring Their Black Girl Magic To The Cover Of ‘Teen Vogue’Douglas made history by becoming the first African-American to become the individual all-around champion at the 2012 Olympics, and she’s the first all-around to make a second Olympic team since 1980.

Still, the ladies aren’t resting. Biles told ESPN, “I think we can all get better. I know I can get better. I’m saving it for Rio.”Congrats on your amazing achievement, Simone and Gabby!

Source: Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas are Headed to Rio | Essence.com

Simone Biles Becomes 1st Female Gymnast In 23 Years To Win Three National Titles

Simone Biles waves to the crowd after competing at the 2015 P&G Gymnastics Championships on Aug. 15, 2015 in Indianapolis.

INDIANAPOLIS – Simone Biles was so good in her pursuit of a third national title that she surprised even herself.   “It’s really exciting; I keep shocking myself every year, it’s weird,” she said of her latest achievement.

Biles became the first American woman in 23 years to win three all-around national titles Saturday night at the 2015 P&G Gymnastics Championships.

The last woman to win three titles, Kim Zmeskal, did so leading into her first Olympic appearance, a feat Biles is now looking to emulate at next year’s Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

“It’s amazing just because I know she took the same path and it led her to the Olympics, so I feel pretty good knowing I’ve achieved what she’s achieved,” Biles said of the 1991 world all-around champion.

Biles won her latest U.S. crown with a two-day score of 124.100, an impressive 4.95 points higher than second-place finisher Maggie Nichols. For comparison, her last two U.S. wins were by margins of 0.2 points in 2013 and 4.25 points in 2014.  Her win was highlighted by a near-perfect 9.9 execution score on vault.

Clearly, the gap between Biles and everyone else in the country – or world, for that matter – is rapidly increasing.  “It’s truly (a matter of wanting) to be the best version of me and I don’t want to replicate others,” Biles said. “Because a lot of people compare me to other people a bunch, but I just want to go out there and I just want to be Simone.”

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Simone Biles Wins Her 2nd Consecutive All-Around Title at World Gymnastics Championships

Simone Biles

Gymnast Simone Biles became only the sixth woman, and first in 11 years, to win consecutive all-around titles at the World Gymnastics Championships in China today.  This is only her fourth season at the elite level and, with the Rio Olympics two years away, the 17-year-old from Spring, Texas, still has room to grow.

“It actually blows my mind,” Biles said of winning back-to-back world titles. “If I think about it right now, I’m just like, `Whaaaat?’ It’s just like, I don’t know. It’s just really weird, but it’s really cool.”

After Svetlana Khorkina repeated as the all-around champion at the 2003 worlds, 10 different women would win the world or Olympic title from 2004-13. Injuries played a part in that volatility — Russia’s Aliya Mustafina looked set for a long run after winning in 2010, only to blow out her knee six months later — as has the sport’s relatively short window for success.

It’s really tough to stay healthy and at the top of your game for an entire quadrennium, especially when every year brings a new crop of phenoms.

But if anyone was going to break that streak of, well, no streak, it was Biles.

No one can match her for power or explosiveness. She is already doing one of the world’s toughest vaults, the Amanar, and she gets so high off the table it’s not inconceivable to think she could add another half-twist to her somersault. Her tumbling passes on floor exercise are so massive she really ought to get FAA clearance.

There’s more to Biles than circus tricks, however. All of her skills are done with precision and polish, making them look deceptively easy. Ordinary folks have more trouble walking on flat ground than Biles does doing an aerial somersault on a balance beam that’s 4 inches wide and 4 feet off the floor.

Most appealing is her personality. While other gymnasts are so intense or stoic they look angry during meets, Biles is constantly smiling and giggling. Her enthusiasm is infectious, and it’s no surprise she’s a favorite with her competitors.

“I know there is competition between pretty much everyone, but we’re such good friends,” said fellow American Kyla Ross, who won the bronze medal after being runner-up to Biles last year. “I think we’re really there to push each other.”

article by Nancy Armour via usatoday.com