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Simone Biles Breaks The Internet With Two Extraordinary New Tumbling Passes

By Blythe Lawrence | May 29, 2019, 5:57 p.m. (ET)

Simone Biles of the USA performs a balance beam routine during the Superstars of Gymnastics on March 23, 2019 in London, England. 


It’s shaping up to be the summer of Simone Biles. 

The four-time Olympic gold medalist broke the so-called “gymternet” Tuesday afternoon by dropping videos of her upgraded tumbling passes on her social media accounts — including a skill no woman has ever competed before. 

“Summer floor training 2019,” Biles captioned the first video, which shows her doing her signature skill, the Biles, into a front layout somersault.

The 22-year-old remains the only woman ever to land her signature element in international competition, though she’s never attempted it as part of a combination on a competition floor.

The second video revealed Biles effortlessly landing a triple twisting double tuck somersault, something a woman has yet to land in a major meet. The triple double, where a gymnast cranks three twists into two flips, has been done by a handful of male gymnasts, and was named after Ri Jong-Song of the North Korea, who showed it at the Olympic Games Athens 2004.

If Biles is able to land the triple double successfully at a world cup or world championship, the skill is likely to be named in her honor in gymnastics’ code of points. It would become the third skill to bear her name, following the Biles on floor, a double layout half out that she competed for the first time in 2013, and the Biles vault, a roundoff, half on, front layout with a double twist, which she landed successfully at last year’s world championships in Doha, Qatar. Since she already has an element named for her on floor, the new skill would go down as the Biles II

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Though Biles did show the triple double on a slightly bouncier training floor than the 40-by-40 floor exercise mat that gymnasts compete on, the effortlessness of both passes made them look competition-ready, stunning gymnastics fans including legendary Olympians. 

“I mean, are you sure you’re not a superhero?” 2008 Olympian an 10-time world medalist Alicia Sacramone Quinn wrote on Twitter.

“I’m going to start asking people, ‘on a scale from 1 to @Simone_Biles new tumbling passes, how impressed are you?’ I think this is an appropriate scale for everyone,” fellow 2008 Olympian Samantha Peszek chimed in.

Biles has competed just once so far this year, cruising to victory at the Stuttgart World Cup in March in Germany. She did so using less difficult versions of the routines she competed in 2018, though they were still packed with enough difficulty to give Biles a three and a half point margin over her nearest competitor.

Afterward, Biles said she and her choreographer were working on a brand new floor routine for the season, though the demands of training had kept it from being ready for that particular competition. She’s next expected to compete at the U.S. Classic on July 20 in Louisville, Kentucky.

Blythe Lawrence is a journalist based in Seattle. She has covered two Olympic Games and is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc. 


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Simone Biles