Simone Biles unveils groundbreaking gymnastics moves
With the culminating event of the 2019 gymnastics season still more than four months away, four-time Olympic champion Simone Biles has made one thing clear: she's still the queen.
The American took to social media to share two new tumbling passes she is working on. The first: her signature move, the Biles (a double layout with a half twist in the second somersault) directly into a front layout. The second pass was a triple twisting, double back flip. Neither pass has ever been competed by a woman.
First of a kind
Biles was the first to compete the double layout with a half twist internationally, having the element named in her honour after successfully executing it during the 2013 World Gymnastics Championships in Antwerp, Belgium.
Now, six years later, she appears set to make history again adding a punch layout to the pass. Of the two passes posted Tuesday, this was the one executed on the traditional floor exercise mat, notably with a mat marking the out of bounds lines.
"I mean... are you sure you're not a super hero? That tumbling 😍😍😍," tweeted 2008 Olympic silver medalist and 2005 World floor champion Alicia Sacramone in response to the video.
The 'Biles II'?
The triple-twisting double has been performed by a handful of men but never by a woman. If Biles can move the element from the bouncier rod floor on which she showed the pass this week to the floor of the Worlds in Stuttgart in October, it would be named the Biles II and give the 22-year-old American her third named element in the gymnastics Code of Points.
The new tumbling means the four-time World floor champion could raise her difficulty score to as high as 7.3. En route to the World title last year in Doha, Biles was credited with a 6.7 difficulty score, a full point higher than any other woman in the floor final.
With or without the new passes, most consider Biles a lock for a fifth World title on the event.
A rare sighting
Biles, like almost all U.S. gymnasts, is notoriously tight-lipped about new elements, making her posts even more significant. In the past, new elements, including an upgraded and groundbreaking vault last season, have been unveiled only in competition.
2017 World all-around champion and Biles' 2018 World teammate Morgan Hurd recently explained the mentality on the GymCastic podcast, saying "Me and my coach just like to think that we don't want to go into selection or qualification with them expecting us to do something because we posted it on social media."
With her posts Tuesday, Biles has already sparked speculation and expectation as to her new floor routine composition. But fans will have to wait and see, as it won't be revealed for sure until she returns to competition on July 20 at the U.S. Classic in Louisville, Kentucky.