Gymnast Simone Biles has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award in the BBC Sports Personality of the Year election. The 24-year-old American withdrew this summer during the Olympics in Tokyo due to mental issues for several gymnastics finals and has spoken openly about it.
Bills won nineteen world titles and four gold medals at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in previous years. In Tokyo, she withdrew from most of the finals for which she qualified. She would have finished the Games in the end with a bronze medal on the crossbar.
“2021 was not the year I expected. In the summer I had to take a step back to recover from an unseen injury. It was the hardest decision of my life, but I chose to speak up to show you don’t have to be ashamed of mental health issues,” Beals told BP bad.
“I am grateful to everyone in the UK who has sent out helpful and loving messages. What I will always cherish – more than any medal – is hearing how you may have helped people feel a little better. I will continue to fight for what I believe in, to make sport a safer place to develop Young people and I will continue to talk about mental health.”
“Evil tv fanatic. Proud thinker. Wannabe internet trailblazer. Music specialist. Organizer. Hardcore pop culture expert.”