Three-time Olympian Lisa Skinner has been bluelighted to hospital after falling during a Cirque du Soleil show in Australia. The 35-year-old acrobat fell around five metres after slipped from rings during a matinee show in Brisbane on Sunday afternoon, watched by horrified families.
Paramedics were called and treated her at the scene, where it appeared she was still conscious although not moving. She was then rushed to hospital where her condition has now been described as “stable”.
The show was playing to a full audience, with witnesses saying the fall was terrifying. One audience member said she had not been allowed to move from her seats, even though she had two small children with her who were very scared about what was going on.
One witness said: “She was doing a hoop from the ceiling and she was suspending and doing a twisty thing and going through the hoop and then all of the sudden she just fell flat on the floor.”
The Queensland Ambulance Service said that they had taken her to hospital so medics could check for any internal injuries which could have been sustained in the fall. Witnesses say that she was taken off in a spinal brace in case of spinal or neck injuries.
Ms Skinner qualified to compete for three Olympic Games in a row; 1996, 2000 and 2004. She made history as the first ever Australian gymnast to qualify for an individual event final at the Olympics.
An astonishing acrobat, she has been wowing crowds on tour with the Cirque du Soleil production Koozå, performing solo aerial hoops.
The show was stopped temporarily while Ms Skinner received treatment before being taken to hospital, but was able to continue. A spokesperson for the circus said that safety of performers is a priority and regular safety drills are held to make sure everyone knows waht to do in the event of a fall.