How Aly Raisman Is Cheering on Simone Biles Even Louder Ahead of 2021 Summer Olympics

In an exclusive interview with E! News, Aly Raisman opened up about her close friendship with Simone Biles and why 2021 Summer Olympic athletes deserve even more support.

By Mike Vulpo Jan 12, 2021 2:00 PMTags
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When it comes to Olympic cheerleaders, Aly Raisman sets the gold standard.

As athletes continue training day after day in hopes of securing a spot for the 2021 summer games in Tokyo, this gold medalist is hoping Simone Biles is given another chance to win big.

"I am so excited to watch Simone and the other girls on the team," Aly, who recently partnered with Silk ULTRA, exclusively shared with E! News. "I think the gymnastics fans have been so amazing over the last couple of years and so supportive, so I'm excited for everyone to be able to watch because they are going to be incredible. I'm always in awe of Simone. She's incredible and, in my opinion, definitely one of the greatest athletes of all time. She's amazing!"

The Fierce author added, "I know she's working super hard. We actually texted the other day so we definitely keep in touch. It's been awhile since we've seen each other, obviously, because of COVID, but I look forward to seeing her and my other teammates and gymnasts whenever things are safe again." 

Back in March 2020, the Tokyo Olympics, set for summer of that year, were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. A few months later, International Olympic Committee Vice President John Coates expressed confidence that the games will start July 23, 2021 "with or without COVID."

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While the delay is understandable, Aly admitted that it could have brought several challenges to Olympic hopefuls. As a result, those who are able to compete deserve extra praise and support. 

"I think it was devastating for so many athletes," the six-time Olympic medalist explained. "I think about some of the athletes who may not have been able to afford to train another year and won't be able to compete in the Olympics. Maybe they were going to peak at the Olympics and then they get injured this year. I was thinking if I was training, if I had to train another year, a year is a long time."

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"The safety and well being of athletes should always be the priority but by the time summer comes, I really hope that we are in a better and safer place with COVID," Aly continued. "And I really do hope the games happen and I hope that whoever is in charge, they are able to do it in a really safe way."

If the Olympic Committee follows through with their goal of having the games in July 2021, Aly expressed interest in traveling to Tokyo to cheer on her teammates. She'd also love to see Hoda Kotb and the Today show if they follow tradition and broadcast live from the games.

"I'm a big fan of Hoda," Aly raved. "Hoda and I have a really nice relationship. Hoda will randomly Facetime me—sometimes with her sweet little girls—and I love saying hi to them. Hoda is amazing…If things are safe, I would love to be in Tokyo."

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And if the opportunity comes where Aly could serve as an announcer or analyst for gymnastics, the two-time Olympian would absolutely consider it.

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"I'm really open to trying new things," she admitted. "When I was competing, all I really had time to do was gymnastics. I think for me, the year of 2021, one of my goals is trying new things. I love gymnastics so much and it's been a huge part of my life and I'd love to be able to explain it to viewers because I know the scoring and certain stuff can be confusing."

In January 2020, Aly announced that she would be retiring from gymnastics. Since stepping away from the sport, the 26-year-old former captain has continued to work out and has developed a love for Pilates.

As she gets older, however, Aly admitted that it "gets a little harder" to recover after workouts. She ultimately discovered Silk ULTRA, which is a new beverage that has 20 grams of complete plant-based protein per serving. 

"I'm able to incorporate the beverage into my everyday routine by making smoothies and having it as a recovery drink after my workouts," Aly explained. "I hope that it helps people as much as it helps me."

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