The 5 Mind-Bending Gymnastics Skills Named After Simone Biles — Including Her New Vault
Simone Biles makes gymnastics, a sport known for its four-inch beam and gravity-defying tumbling, look easy. In her impressive decade-long career, she's become the most decorated gymnast in World Championship history and earned seven Olympic medals. On top of that (and many more records), she continues to defy the odds and challenge what is possible in the sport's rulebooks, performing skills that no woman gymnast has done before. And when you land these skills at a major competition (a World Championships or an Olympic Games, for instance), they name the move after you.
Up until this year, the 26-year-old had four signature skills bearing her name: two on floor (Biles and Biles II), one on vault (Biles), and one on beam (Biles). Then at the 2023 World Artistic Gymnastic Championships in Antwerp, Belgium, on Oct. 1, Biles secured her fifth: the impressive Yurchenko double pike vault, now named the Biles II.
This was Biles' first international competition in two years, her last being the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 — where she famously dealt with the "twisties" and withdrew from the team competition — making this accomplishment all the more significant.
Ahead, check out footage of all the moves named after Biles (so far!), including her shiny new Biles II on vault. Each is given a difficulty value in the Women's Artistic Gymnastics Code of Points — numerical values for vaults and letters for skills on every other event — or a provisional value, when a skill has yet to be landed in international competition. If the scores don't wow you, the skills themselves surely will.
The Biles on Floor
This is Biles's signature move: a double back layout with a half twist. She's been doing it since at least 2013, and it was named after her once she competed with it at the World Championships that year. In this routine, it's her second tumbling pass. In true Biles fashion, she keeps making it harder, and has progressed the tumbling pass over the years. At the 2019 GK US Classic, for example, she added a front layout to the Biles.
Difficulty value: G
The Biles II on Floor
This is Biles's second namesake skill on floor. It's the triple-double (that's two flips and three twists in a tucked position) that she warmed up with before the 2019 GK US Classic but then did in competition for the first time at the 2019 US Gymnastics Championships. She landed it successfully during the qualifying round of the 2019 World Gymnastics Championships, meaning it bore her name. Watch her full routine from the World Championships in this video (the Biles II is the first tumbling pass).
Difficulty value: J
The Biles on Beam
Biles debuted this beam dismount, a double-twisting double backflip, during the first night of the 2019 US Gymnastics Championships. By landing it during the qualifying round of 2019 Worlds, it was added to the Code of Points under her name. You can view it at the end of her routine in the video here. The FIG Women's Technical Committee declared that it is worth an H, or eight tenths of a point, despite the fact that Biles argued it should be worth more. (If you want further details about the controversy, check out this breakdown.)
Difficulty value: H
The Biles on Vault
The first vault skill with Biles's namesake is a roundoff on the springboard connected to a half turn onto the vault with two full twists. Biles unveiled it for the first time at the USA Gymnastics 2018 World Team Selection Camp and debuted it while competing at the 2018 Worlds, when it was officially named after her. Just look at her fly!
Difficulty value: 6.00
The Biles II on Vault
Biles became the first woman to ever perform the Yurchenko double pike vault in competition at the 2021 GK US Classic; however, it wasn't until the 2023 World Championships, where she competed with the skill during the qualifying round, that the move was officially named after her. The Yurchenko double pike is a roundoff onto the springboard followed by a back handspring onto the vault and two backflips with straight legs. It's typically only performed by men, and few men at that. It's also the most difficult vault named in the women's scoring code.
Difficulty value: 6.4