With the blast of colorful fireworks, the Rio Olympics of summer, 2016 began. The Olympics have since then been a hot topic for many, as viewers from all around the world gather at specific times to cheer on their national athletes. Many laudable achievements have been mad– for instance, Jamaicansprinter Usain Bolt won gold in the 100m race for the third time in the Olympics, a feat never before attained, and the Korean archery team won four gold medals. Every athlete has made his or her home country proud by trying their absolute best, regardless of whether he or she won a medal or not. However, with great accomplishments come great risk; unfortunately, many athletes were injured during the games, regardless of the sport. Here are a few examples of athletes that suffered severe injuries.
French gymnast Samir Ait Said painfully broke his leg when he had a bad landing on the vault. According to a video clip of his landing, his left leg snapped and hung loosely as he failed to land on his feet. This incident has garnered much sympathy for the gymnast from viewers, regardless of nationality, as all agree that his injury must have been agonizing. Not only Said but Oksana Chusovitina, an Uzbekistan athlete, was also subjected to severe pain, as she landed on her shins when attempting the Produnova. Fortunately, she wasn’t seriously injured, as she somersaulted after the attempt. Despite her failure to land, Chusovitina is receiving much homage from viewers for her bravery in attempting such a dangerous move at age 41.
A sport already notorious for injuries, weightlifting was also a sport where many athletes got hurt. Andranik Karapetyan, an Armenian weightlifter, dislocated his elbow while lifting 196 kg, as he seemingly bent his arm the wrong way. Both his coach and thousands of viewers were horrified by the major injury, and the athlete was immediately taken to the hospital following his dislocation. A shocking and unfortunate happening, given that Karapetyan is a renowned weightlifting champion in Europe. Similarly, Japanese athlete Yosuke Nakayama and Venezuelan athlete Yusleidy Mariana Figueroa Roldan fell during their own lifts.
Horseback riders weren’t safe from injuries either. Several athletes performing in equestrian suffered a fall from their horses. For instance, Cassio Rivetti fell off his horse during a jumping event, while Ramiro Quintana of Argentina ran into a gate during his act. Not only athletes but also grooms, who take care of horses and ensure they’re healthy, suffered injuries during the games. Robbie Sanderson, a groom from Britain, was kicked off his horse by the horse itself during the medal ceremony. Falling the fall, Sanderson’s horse kicked Sanderson on the head with his front left leg, leading to a huge cut. Thankfully, he was taken to the hospital immediately, helped by his teammates.
Indeed, as seen from these events, medals, and broken records aren’t the only significant factors of the Olympics; many athletes suffer terrible injuries, ones that sometimes hamper them and prevent them from competing ever again. Of course, the examples listed above are only a few out of the many. We, as citizens of countries and viewers of the game, should send prayers for the injured athletes’ recovery, as surely, they will excel in the next Olympics after full recovery. As the Olympics slowly come to a close, we hope for no more shocking injuries and wish all athletes the best of luck for more accomplishments and more records broken. Break a leg, athletes! (Not literally.)
About the Author
Grace Park | Grace Park is a Sophomore who was born and raised in South Korea. She currently attends Seoul Foreign High School. She is an extroverted person who loves to read, write, travel, and cook!