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Health & Fitness Roger Black backs Ben Stokes, Simone Biles for prioritising health

10:38  01 august  2021
10:38  01 august  2021 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

Simone Biles WITHDRAWS from the individual all-around competition

  Simone Biles WITHDRAWS from the individual all-around competition Simone Biles has withdrawn from the individual all-around competition at the Tokyo Olympics 'to focus on her mental health', USA Gymnastics has announced.The four time gold medal winner, the current champion, decided not to compete in Thursday’s finals after consulting with Team US officials following her dismal withdrawal from the team competition on Tuesday.

Biles for her part says the medication she took was for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). The International Tennis Federation said the Williams sisters had been given permission to use the drugs for 'therapeutic use'. Fancy Bears claimed gymnast Simone Biles , who won five medals in Rio, tested positive for another banned substance in August but also had special dispensation to use it. Both the International Federation of Gymnasts and the International Tennis Federation said no rules had been broken.

Criticism of Simone Biles for withdrawing from some events at Tokyo 2020 is "baffling", says Olympic gold medallist Callum Skinner. Within days of Biles pulling out of the final, it was announced England cricketer Ben Stokes was taking "an indefinite break" from the game to prioritise his mental wellbeing. "This isn't the start of a tidal wave of athletes suddenly pulling out of events because of mental ill health ," said Olympic gold medallist Callum Skinner.

Jamie Baulch, Iwan Thomas are posing for a picture: MailOnline logo © Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo

Former world and European 400m champion Roger Black has given his backing to England cricketer Ben Stokes and American gymnast Simone Biles after they withdrew from events last week to help their mental health.

‘It just so, so important to support someone when they speak out and say they’re not coping,’ Black, 55, told the Mail on Sunday.

‘This isn’t a new issue. We’ve all been there at one time or another dealing with similar things. It’s just that we’re talking about it these days, and that’s a good thing for society, and speaking as a parent, a positive thing.’

( © Provided by Daily Mail ( Jamie Baulch standing in front of a crowd: ( © Provided by Daily Mail (

Biles pulled out of two events at Tokyo 2020, saying she needed to put her mental health first, while Stokes has announced he will play no part in the forthcoming series against India ‘to prioritise his mental wellbeing.’

Mental health and elite sport: the pressure to perform

  Mental health and elite sport: the pressure to perform Gymnastics star Simone Biles pulls out of the individual all-around final in TokyoAs part of the US team in Tokyo she was due to take part in the women’s team final yesterday, but “walked off the mat after an uncharacteristically faulty vault”, Elle magazine said. Today, it’s been confirmed that she has also withdrawn from the individual all-around final tomorrow.

As gymnast Simone Biles gears up for the Tokyo Olympics, she gives " Health " an inside peek at As a Black gymnast in a sport that was, for a long time, devoid of diversity, having parents who own a Taking care of her mental health is something else Simone has prioritized whenever she has felt Simone has been dating Jonathan Owens, a defensive back for the Houston Texans, for about a year.

Biles - the most decorated American gymnast of all time with four Olympic golds and 19 in the world championships - had arrived in Tokyo as Team USA's star athlete. But her performances in qualifying suggested she was off her game, before a big stumble on the Initially put down to 'injury', Biles later qualified that she had withdrawn to 'focus on mental health ' and also withdrew from the individual all-round event - leaving question marks over her participation in other individual events. Team USA ended up settling for silver in the team event with the Russian Olympic Committee taking gold, with two

Black won three Olympic medals for Team GB across the 1992 and 1996 Games, a bronze in the relay while injured in Barcelona then silver in the individual and relay events in Atlanta.

‘I went to the Games in 1992 with an injury and in constant pain,’ he said.

‘You’re meant to be enjoying yourself but I absolutely hated it. I walked away with a bronze and it just didn’t mean much, and not because it was a bronze. I was struggling.


Video: Simone Biles: 'Put mental health first' (Sky News)

‘There are dark places and there are really dark places and I’m fortunate I had support and was back as a different athlete in 1996.

‘I know others who’ve been in dark places, like Kelly Holmes in the years before won two golds in Athens.

Piers Is Wrong, Simone Biles Has Just Shown The World What Real Strength Looks Like

  Piers Is Wrong, Simone Biles Has Just Shown The World What Real Strength Looks Like By prioritising her wellbeing over her need to win medals, Simone Biles has shown the world what true leadership looks like.And so as the world watched on this week as she arrived in Tokyo tipped to sweep up a load more golds both with and for the US team, it’s safe to say the pressure she was facing was much more than most of us experience on a tough day at the office. So when news broke that Biles had dropped out of the gymnastics team event for health reasons, many people who love to watch her perform were understandably disappointed. But should they be surprised? Should they be critical? Or even worse — outraged….

England all-rounder Ben Stokes has taken an indefinite break from all cricket with immediate effect to prioritise his mental wellbeing and continue his recovery from an injury to his left index finger, the country’s cricket board (ECB) said. “ Ben has shown tremendous courage to open up about his feelings and wellbeing,” Ashley Giles, England’s director of men’s cricket, said in a statement. “Our primary focus has always been and will continue to be the mental health and welfare of all of our people.

Simone Biles ’s further participation in the Tokyo Olympics looks even cloudier after USA Gymnastics confirmed she will not compete in the finals of the vault or uneven bars. “After further consultation with medical staff, Simone Biles has decided to withdraw from the event finals for vault and the uneven bars,” USA Gymnastics said in a statement on Saturday morning. “She will continue to be evaluated daily to determine whether to compete in the finals for floor exercise and balance beam.”

'She’d overcome years of injuries and personal issues but the difference was she went into Athens having been physically and mentally fit for four, five, six months. When you’re not hurting physically, your mind is free.'

( © Provided by Daily Mail ( ( © Provided by Daily Mail (

Black said that while injuries are often a factor in a decline in an athlete's mental health, being in a good condition mentally was equally important.

And he dismissed criticism Stokes and Biles have got from some sections of society for being weak for withdrawing from competition.

‘When you walk out into an Olympic stadium or arena, you are totally exposed, and you need to be a good condition, physically and mentally, to excel,' he said.

‘You might hear the occasional commentator or critic claim that Ben Stokes or Simone Biles are somehow weak for doing what they’ve done.

'Well first I’d say if you think they became one of the best cricketers in the world and the best gymnast ever while being weak, you really don’t understand elite sport.

'And almost certainly you haven’t been at the pinnacle of global sport, where the pressure can be so extraordinary.’

Read more

Mental Health in Sport Is Finally Having Its Moment .
Tokyo 2020 will always be remembered as the Games where stars such as Simone Biles had to step back from their sports to protect their mental wellbeing. Now, other athletes who’ve wrestled with declining mental health, as well as the sports psychologists and performance coaches they work with, tell Men's Health about the unique pressures of elite-level sport and explain what can be done to make sure athletes thrive personally, as well asWhile the sporting world scratched its head and wondered if and when Biles would be back, she quietly retreated to a gym on the edge of Tokyo and worked on honing the basics. When she returned, just in time for her final event, she took home a bronze medal.

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