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Gymnastics - Artistic - Olympics: Day 11

Source: Jamie Squire / Getty

Congratulations to Simone Biles who has been named Time Magazine’s 2021 Athlete of the Year. This well-deserved honor not only speaks to her accomplishments, tenacity, and bravery as an athlete but also as a Black woman.

Simone is an extraordinary athlete to say the least. With a combined total of 32 Olympic and World Championship medals, the American Gymnast knows a thing or two about her craft. Although Simone is what some would call a beast in her sport, it’s her convictions that make her stand out amongst her fellow competitors. During the Toyko Olympics, Simone took a stand for her mental health. Even though she was training for that moment for five years and the world was on the edge of their seats waiting for her to perform, she opted to put herself first and not compete. And if that isn’t a remarkable act that deserves an honor such as Athlete of the Year, we’re not sure what does.

“I do believe everything happens for a reason, and there was a purpose,” Biles tells TIME. “Not only did I get to use my voice, but it was validated as well.”

By taking the major stand she took, Simone encouraged a myriad of women (and men) to put themselves first despite what’s expected of them. On the heels of Simone’s courageous stand, more Internet memes that promoted mental health priority were created, mental health forums were planned, and more conversations shifted toward protecting one’s peace.

We are glad Simone is receiving this honor for what she has done and for what she didn’t do.  Congrats again Simone!

To read the entire article, click here.


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