Simone Biles has a "target" on her back in gymnastics, she said in Episode 5 of "Simone vs Herself."
The 24-year-old star said the powers in her sport "devalue skills" to compensate for her dominance.
Check out the full Facebook Watch docuseries episode - which also features Jemele Hill - below:
Simone Biles is undeniably the greatest gymnast of all time.
But rather than embracing their superstar and rewarding her adequately for the gravity-defying stunts she pulls off every time she performs, the powers of the elite gymnastics world routinely underrate her routines in an attempt to undermine the 24-year-old's dominance.
During Episode 5 of "Simone vs Herself," which was first released on Tuesday, Biles speaks about the "target" placed on her back due to her incredible talents.
"I'm kind of breaking boundaries," she said. "And they're like 'Well, wait a minute! We need to change this real quick. What can we do?'"
"So they devalue skills," she added. "It is what it is."
Biles hasn't always resigned to that fate. For a long time, she fought back against the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) - the governing body of elite gymnastics - because she believed she was getting slighted. They hardly budged.
Now, as she approaches the end of her illustrious career, she's adopted a new outlook. Instead of reducing the complexity of her skills or trying in vain to convince the FIG to reward the point totals she deserves, Biles has resolved to continue pushing the bounds of gymnastics "just for myself."
"There's a defiance in everything that she does," The Atlantic's Jemele Hill says in the episode. "And it's not a petulant defiance; it's her realizing her worth. She's come to realize she is the sport right now, and I think it's that sense of empowerment that has only emboldened her."
Check out the full episode below:
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