Iconic gymnastics moves named after Simone Biles

Biles now has five signature moves named after her in three different events.

July 1, 2024, 9:51 AM

Simone Biles has made history countless times, not only for the number of titles she’s won but also the moves she’s been the first to perform in competitions.

Biles showed off her history-making moves in the 2024 U.S. Gymnastics Olympic Trials, where she earned a spot to represent the U.S. women’s gymnastics team at the Summer Olympic Games in Paris, which will kick off with the Opening Ceremony on July 26.

Joscelyn Roberson, Suni Lee, Hezly Rivera, Jade Carey, Simone Biles, Jordan Chiles and Leanne Wong pose after being selected for the 2024 U.S. Olympic Women's Gymnastics Team 2024 (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Joscelyn Roberson, Suni Lee, Hezly Rivera, Jade Carey, Simone Biles, Jordan Chiles and Leanne Wong pose after being selected for the 2024 U.S. Olympic Women's Gymnastics Team on Day Four of the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Gymnastics Trials at Target Center on June 30, 2024, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Biles will lead the team -- also consisting of Jordan Chiles, Jade Carey, Hezly Rivera and Suni Lee - in her third Olympics after winning her ninth U.S. all-around title earlier in June.

She also was the top winner of the women’s trials.

Biles now has five signature moves named after her in three different events: on the floor, on vault, and on the balance beam.

In this Oct. 7, 2023, file photo, Simone Biles performs a practice vault watched by coach Laurent Landi and the judges during the Women's Vault Apparatus Final at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships-Antwerp 2023. in Atwerp, Belgium.
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Here is a look at the gymnastics moves that Biles has made her own.

Biles on the Vault

The "Biles on the vault," a Yurchenko half-on with two twists, was first successfully completed on the world stage at the 2018 World Championships. Yurchenko is a type of move named after Soviet gymnast Natalia Yurchenko that involves a round-off onto the springboard, followed by a back handspring on the vault.

Biles does a round-off into a back hand-spring with a half turn, and completes the move by twisting twice in a somersault.

In this Oct. 4, 2023, file photo, Simone Biles competes on the Balance Beam in the Women's Team Final during the 52nd FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships, in Antwerp, Belgium.
Lionel Bonaventure/AFP via Getty Images, FILE

It was assigned a difficulty score of 6.4 -- which makes it one of the most difficult vaults in women's artistic gymnastics.

The Biles II on the Vault

In 2023, Biles became the first woman to land the Yurchenko double pike in international competition at the 2023 World Artistic Gymnastic Championships in Antwerp, Belgium.

From then on, the skill was named the Biles II.

The move consists of a backflip off the vault and two full rotations in a pike position before landing.

Biles on the Floor Exercise

The "Biles on the floor" was first successfully completed by Biles on the world stage in 2013 at the World Artistic Gymnastics Championships. This move is a double layout with a half-twist, which means that her body remains straight and elongated as she flips twice. While in the air, she completes a half-twist.

What makes this move so challenging is the "blind landing," Courtney Johnson, a USA Gymnastics-accredited judge told ABC News in 2021. This means that Biles can't see the floor where she will land when she comes down from the flip.

Not only does she have to be extremely high in the air to do two full, stretched-out flips, but the half-twist makes this move more difficult, Johnson said.

PHOTO: In this Oct. 1, 2023, file photo, Simone Biles performs her Yurchenko double pike vault during Women's Qualification at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships-Antwerp 2023, in Antwerp, Belgium.
In this Oct. 1, 2023, file photo, Simone Biles performs her Yurchenko double pike vault with coach Laurent Landi on the vault mat for assistance during Women's Qualification at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships-Antwerp 2023, in Antwerp, Belgium.
Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images, FILE

Biles II on the Floor Exercise

Her second signature move on the floor, "Biles II," was first successfully completed on the world stage in October 2019 at the World Championships in Stuttgart, Germany. For this move -- a triple-double -- Biles flips twice while twisting three times before hitting the ground.

"The timing has to be good enough for you to still get that height in the air but also move your arms to start this spin-rotation part," Johnson told ABC News.

Biles is the first female gymnast to ever complete a triple-double.

Biles on the Balance Beam

The "Biles on the balance beam," which was first completed on the international stage at the 2019 World Championships, features a double-double dismount. Biles is the first gymnast to ever complete this skill, according to Team USA.

"If you're listing the level of difficulty amongst all those skills, I would say the balance beam dismount is probably at the top of the list," former UCLA gymnastics coach Valorie Kondos Field told ABC News previously.

In this Oct. 4, 2023, file photo, Simone Biles reacts after performing her uneven bars routine applauded by coach Laurent Landi during the Women's Team Final at the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships-Antwerp 2023, in Antwerp, Belgium.
Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images, FILE

The move is a double-twisting double backflip, completed on a 4-inch wide beam.

"The one that is just mind boggling to me is the dismount of balance," Don Spencer, gymnastic coach and USA Gymnastics Power TeamGym Technical Committee chairman told ABC News in 2021. "It's hard enough just to get to a dismount, with multiple skills in front of it going down a straight line. To be able to execute a skill that twists twice and flips twice from a balance beam ... that is just absolutely phenomenal."

Simone Biles competes in the floor exercise during the 2024 Xfinity U.S. Gymnastics Championships at Dickies Arena on May 31, 2024, in Fort Worth, Texas.
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Coaches say that Biles' genetics likely has a lot to do with her success.

Johnson said her 4-foot-8-inch height and small stature gives her more time in the air to do high-difficulty skills, and it makes her unstoppable when combined with her strong, muscular build.

"She's using her body and her muscles as efficiently as possible and it makes her that much more powerful," Johnson said.

Her strength allows her to push her smaller body higher up into the air, Johnson said, and since she's shorter and takes up less space, she can manage more twists, turns, and stunts than her competitors.