Gymnastics has always been a fun sport both for the athletes and spectators watching the sport. However, there are a bunch of risks that come with it. With constant flips on a floor and the beam, the risk for any injury is possible.Even the uneven bars can be dangerous. How? Well the high bar is set to be around 8 feet high. That’s a pretty good amount of height off the ground. With a fall it can really injure someone or maybe even result in death.
Unfortunately, an uneven bar accident did result in a young woman’s death. College gymnast Melanie Coleman died with a fall off the uneven bars during one of her regular practices. “Melanie Coleman fell during a routine exercise on the uneven bars Friday, university spokesman Ken Sweeten said.” (Smiko-Bednarski, CNN News)
But, what many people were shocked when the news broke was how an experienced gymnast could have fallen to her death on the uneven bars. It’s such a rare death in gymnastics but it has happened before about 31 years ago with a gymnast by the name of Julissa Gomez. She had an accident on the vault and she became paralyzed. “She died of complications from her injuries three years later.” (Smiko-Bednarski, CNN News) Many gymnasts suffer from injuries every year, and what needs to happen is to propose prevention strategies so the number of gymnasts that are getting injured each year can be reduced or so it is less likely to happen.
Melanie had her whole life planned out while she was in college. She planned on being a nurse when she graduated and working as a part-time gymnastics instructor for little kids. This whole accident was very painful for the Coleman family but they still try to keep their spirits high just like Melanie always did. “They are confident that her spirit, laughter, and humor will live on through the ones who loved her most, as well as through the gift of life to those who needed it most through organ donation.” (Smiko-Bednarski, CNN News)
Many people looked up to Coleman because she was a person who inspired many people. She had the personality of someone who had an extraordinary quality that everyone wanted. Even in the gym, she was considered a leader. “To her, it wasn’t about trying to get a better score. What made her a great gymnast is also what made her a great person, Alberti said. She had a desire to help everyone around her.” (Smiko-Bednarski, CNN News) By her having that caring personality, it really made everyone she taught in the gym feel one of a kind.