*Sifiso Lungelo Thabete was simply playing to the crowd as he entered the arena before a content in South Africa, but his trademark backflip resulted in tragedy.
The bodybuilder has died after landing on his head when he failed to rotate properly in the air and instead of landing on his feet, he lands on his neck.
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Thabete, from Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, lay motionless in agony on his side before rolling onto his back.
When video of the stunt went viral, he was initially ridiculed after botching an attempted backflip — this was before the public was made aware of the severity of the incident. The footage shows a stunned audience and several people coming to his aid.
A little reminder… Your Brain has no muscles to protect it.. Keep your head safe all the time. Avoid getting hit on your thinking machine pic.twitter.com/LT1BKXILMr
— Renzo_Gracie_BJJ (@RenzoGracieBJJ) August 9, 2017
The description accompanying a YouTube video of the horrific performance reads:
One never knows when their time on earth is over, as for one body builder from Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa found out today.
It all started when Thabete began waving his arms and running around the open floor to gain people’s attention. He stood in the middle of the floor as onlookers filmed and he attempted to flip backwards, but unfortunately he did not fully rotate. Thabete came down hard on his head putting an enormous amount of force on his neck, breaking it in the fall.
Described by many as a young man with a bright future Sifiso’s passing is a huge loss to the sport.
South African bodybuilding magazine Muscle Evolution said the bodybuilding community was “shocked and saddened” by the news of his death.
The magazine reports he was an International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness Junior World Champion in the up-to-165-pound category. Thabete recently won an event at the IFBB Muscle Mulisha Grand Prix in July.