Simone Biles breaks down on TV over devastating admission

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Seen here, Simone Biles chokes back tears in an interview on TV.
Simone Biles choked back tears in an interview on TV where she opened up about her gymnastics struggles. Pic: NBC

American gymnastics superstar Simone Biles has been reduced to tears on TV after opening up about her heartbreaking mental health battle.

Biles made headlines around the world during the Tokyo Olympics after pulling out of several gymnastics events, before revealing that she was dealing with the "twisties" - a sensation in which a gymnast loses track of where they are when in the air.

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The 24-year-old - regarded by many as the greatest female gymnast of all time - still managed to come home from the Olympics with a bronze medal in the balance beam.

She has since spoken in detail about her mental health struggles and become a global beacon for others to come forward with similar stories.

However, in a gut-wrenching interview on the 'Today' show in the United States, Biles made the sad admission that she's "still scared to do gymnastics".

The interview, which spans nearly 10 minutes, focused on Biles' reaction and response to disgraced former USA team doctor Larry Nassar, as well as her struggles at the Tokyo Olympics. 

Biles, who is currently participating in the Gold Over America Tour, choked back tears when discussing her fear of performing twists in her routines.

"I don't twist [on tour,]" Biles said. "I do double lay half outs, which is my signature move on the floor. That's never affected me. But everything else weighs so heavy and I watch the girls do it and it's not the same.

"To do something that I've done forever and just not be able to do it because of everything I've gone through is really crazy, cause I love this sport so much. It's hard, I'm sorry. And I don't think people understand the magnitude of what I go through. 

"For so many years to go through everything that I've gone through, put on a front, I'm proud of myself and I'm happy that I can be a leader for the survivors and bring courage to everybody speaking up, so I'm happy to be a voice for them. But we go through our own things and it's hard, but the twisting ... will come back. But I'm still scared to do gymnastics."

Simone Biles is pictured here at the Tokyo Olympic Games.
Simone Biles caused worldwide headlines after pulling out of several gymnastics events at the Tokyo Olympic Games. Pic: Getty

Biles then discussed some ways she has handled mental struggles, which include taking walks and being less active on social media.

The American has spoken openly about her mental health and struggles with the "twisties" since the Olympic Games.

Biles has not retired from gymnastics, and believes she will eventually move past the "twisties." 

Once that happens, she can decide whether she wants to keep competing in high-level events.

Simone Biles hits out over Larry Nassar investigation

Biles last month spoke up about convicted sex offender Nassar, the disgraced former USA team doctor sentenced to up to 175 years in prison for molesting young female gymnasts.

She slammed USA Gymnastics for not following up with concerns she raised about Nassar in 2015.

Biles was one of three female gymnasts — the others were Maggie Nichols and Aly Raisman — who had been identified as “uncomfortable” with Nassar, but Biles did not learn of USA Gymnastics’ investigation into his conduct until after the Rio Olympics, according to the report. 

She was not interviewed by the governing body’s hired investigator before the claims of Nassar’s abuse went public.

It was only after she publicly announced in 2018 she had been abused by Nassar that USA Gymnastics followed up.

“For too long I've asked myself, “Was I too naive? Was it my fault?" I now know the answer to those questions. No. No, it was not my fault. No, I will not and should not carry the guilt that belongs to Larry Nassar, USAG, and others,” Biles wrote in her announcement.

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