Simone Biles quashes retirement rumours as she 'works on mental health'

US gymnastics star Simone Biles

Gymnastics icon Simone Biles has quelled rumours of her retirement as she revealed she was “working on my mental health”.

Biles has not competed professionally since the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, when she suffered a bout of the “twisties” and withdrew from a number of events.

The 25-year-old has denied she has quit gymnastics for good, however.

Has Simone Biles retired?

Biles, a four-time Olympic gold medallist, responded to retirement rumours on Twitter.

She replied to a post reading: “My daughter learned that @Simone_Biles retired today and she has cried literally for the last hour.”

Biles wrote: “I haven’t retired though 💖 just working on my mental health.”

The American star even suggested recently that she may compete at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

“I’m still taking time for myself just to work on myself, mentally and physically,” she said during a speaking engagement in Mexico City. “For Paris, as of now, I would say, I’ll be there regardless.

“I just don’t know if it will be as an athlete or as an audience member, but if I do decide to train, obviously, I’d have to go 100 percent, so I probably wouldn’t hold back. I’d still try to give it my all.”

Biles also revealed earlier this year that she is still undergoing drug tests, which means she will be able to immediately return to competition if she so desired.

Gymnastics star Simone Biles
TOKYO, JAPAN – AUGUST 03: Simone Biles of Team United States reacts during the Women’s Balance Beam Final on day eleven of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Gymnastics Centre on August 03, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

What happened to Simone Biles at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games?

Biles was expected to add to the five Olympic medals she earned at Rio 2016 whilst in the Japanese capital last year.

But she endured a tumultuous Games, withdrawing from five events with a case of the “twisties”, a mental block sometimes suffered by gymnasts.

Simone Biles at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
TOKYO, JAPAN – AUGUST 03: Simone Biles of Team United States competes in the Women’s Balance Beam Final on day eleven of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Gymnastics Centre on August 03, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

“In gym we call it ‘the twisties,'” Biles said in a tearful video from her hotel room in Tokyo.

“Should be a better word because it sucks to have them for anybody. And then I’m starting to get, like, mental blocks where I don’t want to go for the skill because I’m afraid I’m going to get hurt because I’m not doing the correct flip.”

Biles courageously returned to competition to earn an Olympic bronze medal in the balance beam.

She then took part in the Gold Over America Tour, but has now been absent from the international stage for nearly a year.

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