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Shun Fujimoto: A Busted Kneecap Didn't Stop This Gymnast

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During the 1976 Summer Olympics, the Japanese gymnastics team was attempting to the win its fifth consecutive Olympic title. After finishing his floor routine, gymnast Shun Fujimoto felt pain in his knee after his final landing. Deciding it was manageable, he chose not to tell his teammates or coaches, but witnesses claim to have heard a snap when Fujimoto landed.

Fighting through pain, Fujimoto continued on to his pommel horse routine, scoring a 9.5 out of 10. In the next event, the rings, he nailed his highflying dismount but heard an additional crack. Fighting back tears, he scored a 9.7, a personal best. As he walked away, it was obvious that Fujimoto was in extreme pain, and doctors ordered him to sit out. He was later diagnosed as having dislocated and broken a kneecap and torn ligaments in his leg. Although he was out of the competition, Fujimoto motivated his teammates to win Gold over the rival Soviets. Unfortunately his injuries marked the end of Fujimoto's gymnastics career.

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