GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – “I just thought it would be better to take a backseat to work on my mindfulness,” said Simone Biles Olympic Gymnast. Biles made her announcement during a press conference in Tokyo, that she has withdrawn from competing. Citing the COVID-19 impacted year of 2020 and the decision to not allow fans or family in the stands as the Coronavirus pandemic continues, as major factors in her decision.
Packers Quarterback Aaron Rodgers weighed in during a Wednesday afternoon press conference. “I think it’s important that we work on our mental state. As you’ve seen with Simone Biles, I think there needs to be more of a conversation around that. We as athletes are often out on a pedestal, that we’re beyond any mental hindrances,” said Rodgers.
The Airforce Gymnastics Academy in Green Bay has been around for 15 years. You could say Olympic dreams are born here. “We are very proud of all of the girls from team USA and that does include Simone,” said Jenny Beyer, owner of Airforce Gymnastics Academy. For young athletes, Simone Biles is a huge source of inspiration. “Simone Biles comes up with new flips and stuff that are named after her,” said 10-year-old Emily Ebbensgard. Emily says she has been in gymnastics for a long time and if she had the opportunity to speak with Biles, she would ask her about the start of her career. “I would ask her how she got started and how she has been able to be so good at it,” said Ebbensgard.
Tatum Tonn is an 8-year-old gymnast and a Grace and Simone fan. “Because they do amazing gymnastics and it inspires me to do new things,” said Tatum. This might be the end of the road for the current Olympic games for Biles, but her fans are not ready to count her out. “Simone is one of the greatest Gymnasts of all time. She has really pushed the limits of our sport with her amazing athletic ability and she is very fun to watch. A lot of the kids really enjoy seeing her compete,” said Beyer.
Registration for Fall instruction is currently underway at Airforce Gymnastics Academy and the classes are known to fill quickly. For more information, visit their website here.