In a new video on Instagram and Twitter, Simone Biles handsprings twice on a balance beam, then throws herself into the air looking like a slinky being shot out of a geyser. It's called a triple-double dismount, and it's simply never been done before.
Here are the facts about Simone Biles' triple-double beam dismount: 1) She did it after having been out of quarantine and into the gym for only a month. 2) She captioned the historic clip "sometimes I flip and what not," with a shrug emoji. 3) The same day she did the triple-double, she also shared helpline resources for transgender people on Instagram stories. Everyone who claims to "contain multitudes" because they eat chocolate on the toilet or whatever, take note.
Let's take the briefest walk through the story of Simone Biles, the most decorated gymnast of all time, doing historic athletic feats that sound like luxury espresso drinks:
Less than one year ago, Simone Biles became the first person in history to perform a double-double dismount (a double salto backwards tucks with 2/1 twist) on the balance beam in competition. It was named "The Biles."
The same week, she became the first woman in history to perform a triple-double (a double salto backward tucked with 3/1 twist) during a floor routine. It was named "The Biles II." (She already had another floor move and a vault move named after her.)
And then on Tuesday, she released a video of herself practicing a triple-double dismount on a balance beam. When she successfully completes it in competition, it will probably be named "Seriously Simone, What The Hell."
"This week, they're starting getting their skills back and having a little bit more fun at the gym," Biles' coach Cecile Landi, told the Olympic Channel two weeks ago of her athletes, which is like saying "This week, Mich is exploring primary colors" two weeks before Michelangelo releases preliminary sketches for the Sistine Chapel.
It's an exceptionally brave week for Biles out of the gym, as well—on Monday, she was named as a plaintiff in a public court filing for the very first time in the sexual abuse lawsuit involving USA Gymnastics and the United States Olympic Committee. Biles, as well as over 100 other athletes who are survivors of the serial sexual abuser Larry Nassar, are part of an ongoing lawsuit against the organizations in the wake of the abuse case. An 18-month investigation by the U.S. Senate found that both organizations “knowingly concealed abuse by Larry Nassar," leading to the abuse of athletes. Biles, who has spoken out about being abused by Nassar, has repeatedly called for the organizations to submit to their own independent investigation.
That's a week for Simone Biles—springing along a thin wooden beam toward history and defying institutions that cover up the abuse of women and girls. Watching her go from strength to strength continues to be nothing but powerful.
Jenny Singer is a staff writer for Glamour. You can follow her on Twitter.
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