Inside Simone Biles And Naomi Osaka's Relationship

Naomi Osaka was one of the first athletes to step down from competition due to mental health issues. As fans will recall, the tennis star took to Instagram in May to announce that she would not be talking to the press at the French Open, citing her well-being as the cause, per NBC News. Not too long after, she shared a lengthy post on Instagram, saying she would be withdrawing from the competition altogether. "I think now the best thing for the tournament, the other players, and my well-being is that I withdraw so that everyone can get back to focusing on the tennis going on in Paris," she wrote. "The truth is that I have suffered long bouts of depression since the US Open in 2018, and I have had a really hard time coping with that." Subsequently, she also withdrew from Wimbledon.

At the Tokyo Olympics, Simone Biles faced a similar situation, withdrawing from the team competition for a similar reason. "I was still struggling with some things," she told the press, per USA Today. "Therapy has helped a lot as well as medicine. That's all been going really well. Whenever you get in high-stress situations, you kind of freak out and don't know really know how to handle all of those emotions especially at the Olympic Games." Biles also withdrew from the individual all-around, also citing mental health issues that she needed to focus on. 

So now that we've covered what Osaka and Biles have in common, let's take a deeper look into what their relationship is really like.

Simone Biles respects Naomi Osaka

It's no secret that Naomi Osaka and Simone Biles are two of the best female athletes in their respective sports, but that hasn't stopped them from facing struggles just like everyone else. They're only human, right? When the press asked Biles about Osaka and how she had been so candid about her mental health going into the Olympic games, Biles quickly threw her support behind her. "I say put mental health first because if you don't, then you're not going to enjoy your score and you're not gonna succeed as much as you want to," she said, per People, when asked about Osaka.

Biles didn't stop there. "So, it's okay sometimes to even sit out the big competitions to focus on yourself because it shows how strong of a competitor or a person that you really are," she added. It's clear to see that she and Osaka are on the same wavelength, and Biles seems to have a lot of respect for the tennis star.

As for this writing, Osaka hasn't publicly commented on Biles' Olympics situation, but we assume she has her fellow athlete's back.

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.