Simone Biles will not be competing at the Winter Olympics in Beijing. But she will be there, in spirit, in the minds of many of the best athletes.

Biles’ legacy among fans is as one of the top gymnasts in history. But for other Olympians, even those competing in winter sports, Biles is an inspiration of another sort.

She gave voice to the feelings they have shared — the doubts, the worries, the pressures. In speaking openly about mental health, along with other star athletes like tennis player Naomi Osaka, Biles gave tacit permission to be vulnerable. She reminded fans, friends and family that even the best athletes in the world have feelings and fears.