<
>

Olympics 2021 - Simone Biles discusses her mental health, challenges after winning bronze on beam

play
What's next for Simone Biles after the Olympics? (0:58)

D'Arcy Maine breaks down Simone Biles' return to Olympic competition and what's next for the superstar gymnast. (0:58)

Simone Biles was not cleared to compete in any individual event apart from the balance beam, she said in an interview with NBC Sports' Mike Tirico a few hours after winning the bronze medal on beam on Tuesday.

Biles, 24, withdrew from the team final, the all-around and the individual vault, floor and uneven bars event finals earlier this week to focus on her mental health after experiencing the "twisties." She said she worked with the International Gymnastics Federation's doctor, Team USA's doctor and a sports psychologist throughout the past week to determine if she was prepared -- mentally and physically -- to compete.

The doctors evaluated her every day, asking her how she was doing before and after practice, Biles said.

"When the all-around came, I was like, 'Absolutely not, I don't feel comfortable or safe going out there,'" Biles explained. She said she felt the same way before the vault event final.

But with uneven bars, she actually felt hopeful when she went into practice, she said. But, she "still got lost in the air" before she came down and crashed. "We were like it's not the best idea to do that," she said.

On floor, she knew she couldn't do it even before practice, she said. "Not happening because that's where I twist the most on all of my passes," she said.

For Biles to be cleared for the balance beam event final, she said she had to change her routine.

"I do usually twist in my beam dismount, but I downgraded it, and so I asked [coach] Cecile [Landi] if we could try a downgraded dismount that I probably haven't done since I was 12 or 13," she said, and smiled.

Biles ended her Tokyo Olympics run with a silver medal from the team final and a bronze in the balance beam, which put her medal tally at seven -- tying the record for the most Olympic medals by an American female gymnast with Shannon Miller.

In the interview, Biles added that she has had an outpouring of messages from mental health advocates -- including Michael Phelps, Naomi Osaka and Oprah Winfrey -- and said she felt happy and heard.

"I am going back home in one piece, which I was a little bit nervous about. It's not how I wanted it to go, but I think we've opened bigger doors and bigger conversations," she concluded.