21 Hilarious Gold-Medal Wipeouts From the Greatest Olympic Athletes

Elite athletes compete in the Olympics to fulfill a lifelong dream of winning gold at the world’s highest level. But the downside is, sometimes you wipe out in front of the entire human race. (Ouch.)

And because GIFs exist, your wipeout can be replayed time after time after time for all eternity. It’s actually pretty amazing how high the stakes are when you think about it like that. Yet despite the fear of living on as a three-second GIF, every competitor knows that falling down is an essential part of getting better.

So today, while most people are celebrating the Tokyo Games with a recap of the greatest athletic performances, we are saluting the fearless athletes who pick themselves up, dust themselves off, and get back out there to ride faster, jump higher, and compete harder with these 21 Olympic-sized wipeouts.

Cover Photo: Marta_Kent (Getty Images)

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