Simone Biles is known as the GOAT, or Greatest of All Time in women’s gymnastics. The two-time Olympian has set world records and has an estimated net worth of $10 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
Biles made headlines when she temporarily withdrew from competition at the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo citing health concerns. After regular health screenings, she decided to return to the Olympics for the balance beam final August 3, 2021.
“We are so excited to confirm that you will see two U.S. athletes in the balance beam final tomorrow — Suni Lee AND Simone Biles!! Can’t wait to watch you both!” USA Gymnastics said in a statement.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Biles’ Gymnastics Career Started With a Daycare Field Trip & A Joke
Biles made her first steps toward gymnastics fame on a daycare field trip in Houston, Texas in 2003, according to NBC Sports. Biles was 6 when her daycare class visited Bannon’s Gymnastix. Her natural talent was quickly apparent when she performed a back tuck, imitating gymnasts at the gym, NBC reported.
A gymnast challenged her to do it again on the balance beam – jokingly.
“So I went and ran up on the beam,” Biles told NBC. “And she screamed at me. She’s like, ‘I wasn’t serious.’ But I was going to do it.”
Gymnastic coaches took notice of her and sent a letter home, saying she should be enrolled in gymnastics, NBC reported. Within a year of coaching, she was able to do a back tuck on the balance beam at age 7, according to NBC.
2. A Deceptive Ad Claiming to Report Biles’ Net Worth Appeared Shortly Before She Announced She Would Return to Compete in the Olympics Balance Beam Finals
Shortly before Biles announced she would return to compete in the Olympics for the balance beam finals, a deceptive ad claiming to report on Biles’s net worth appeared on Internet searches. Snopes reported on the deceptive online advertising campaign.
“We clicked the advertisement,” Snopes reported. “It led to a 226-page slideshow article on the Witty Reporter website. After making our way through all of those pages, Biles’ purported net worth appeared on page 224: $6 million. This figure had no sources and was in no way official.”
Snopes continued with an explanation of the $6 million net worth figure and wrote about the deceptive ad campaign’s tactics. The $6 million net worth figure appeared on several websites following the Google search result.
“The $6 million net worth figure for Biles has also appeared on various big-name websites,” Snopes reported. “However, again, this figure is not official. Asking Google to show a noteworthy person’s net worth might result in a dollar figure in a large font size at the top of the results. However, clicking through to the websites that report the amount often leads to an explanation that it’s simply a speculative estimate.”
Teammate Jade Carey, who won gold for her floor exercise Monday, August 2, told the Associated Press she was happy to see Biles return.
“I’m really proud of her for coming back,” she said, according to the AP. “She’s been through a lot this Olympics so I’m really proud and happy to see her going after beam.”
3. Biles Bought a House in Houston, Texas Suburb With a Swimming Pool & Walk-In Closet
Biles bought an “ultra-modern” house near Houston, Texas in 2019, according to Hello Magazine. She shared photos of her new house on her Instagram story. The Daily Mail reported Biles purchased the home in Spring, a Houston suburb, and took advantage of time in quarantine for renovations.
Her childhood home in Spring was put up for sale in October, 2017, by her brother, and sold in December, according to the Houston Chronicle. It sold for for between $250,001-$285,000 around Dec. 14, 2017, the newspaper reported.
She shared a listing of the house on Twitter at the time.
“the house I grew up in is now up for sale. lots of amazing memories!” she wrote. “someone go buy it.”
4. Biles & Her Siblings Were in the Foster Care System Before She Was Adopted By Her Grandparents
Biles’ mother, Shannon Biles, struggled with drug and alcohol addiction, and Simone Biles and her three siblings spent time in the foster care system before they were adopted by family members, according to The Washington Post. Simone and her sister, Adria, were adopted by their grandparents when Simone was 6 and raised in Texas, according to NBC Sports.
Simone and Adria were the two youngest siblings in the family. The two oldest siblings, Tevin and Ashley, were adopted by their great aunt, who raised them in Cleveland, Ohio, The Post reported.
“Ron and his wife, Nellie, adopted Simone and her younger sister, Adria. Harriet, Ron’s sister and Simone’s great aunt, adopted the two oldest Biles children the same year,” NBC reported.
5. Biles Helped to Create a Scholarship Fund for Foster Children in the United States
Around the time former USA Gymnastics Dr. Larry Nassar was convicted of sexually abusing athletes, Biles decided to work toward a better future through a scholarship program for children in the United States’ foster care system, according to CBS News. She teamed up with nonprofit online school University of the People as a Global Ambassador for the program in 2018, CBS reported.
“Once foster kids age out of the system, they often don’t have the opportunity to go to a regular university because of all the student fees,” Biles told CBS News at the time. “Everyone deserves an opportunity. I was given one, and I want to make sure others get one too.”
In addition to launching the Simone Biles Legacy Scholarship Fund, Biles also became a student at University of the People, according to the university’s website.
“I always dreamed of going to college but decided to follow my gymnastics dreams full time, which didn’t make it possible for me,” Biles said, according to University of the People. “I had planned to attend UCLA but had to defer because of my training schedule. I still want to pursue a college degree and the University of the People offers me the flexibility I need to fit in my studies around my career. I enrolled at the University of the People because I believe in higher education, and want to be able to help share that opportunity for others around the world.”