Photo by Silvia Vatteroni

At 1992 Olympics, China's He Xuemei opened her floor routine with thomas salto which is now banned because of the dangers involved with it.

In 1980, Soviet Elena Mukhina was left quadriplegic following a fall she had while training the dangerous skill. 

Xuemei contributed toward her team's fourth place finish in Barcelona. In mid 2000s, she competed  under the Japanese name Setsubai Takaseki and tried to make the Japanese Olympic team.

Written by Gigi Farid



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