“Dancing with the Stars” can be hazardous to your health. You wouldn’t necessarily think that this amateur celebrity dance show is a dangerous sport, but there’s no question that it’s an athletic pursuit, and as many athletes know, injuries are bound to happen. Click above to see all the celebs who had to leave the ballroom abruptly because they got hurt or sick, and one who exited the show for personal reasons.
To compete on “DWTS,” celebrities have to train with their pro partners to learn brand new routines every single week. If they last long enough in the competition they eventually have to learn two or three dances per week, including group routines. And if they’re really lucky, they get the opportunity to perform a no-holds-barred freestyle routine that’s usually their most demanding performance of the season. It’s tough enough for amateur dancers to learn a bunch of new steps, but to do so under such time constraints every single week is bound to strain the body.
So it’s no wonder that trained athletes have done especially well in the ballroom, including football players Emmitt Smith and Rashad Jennings, figure skaters Kristi Yamaguchi and Meryl Davis, and gymnasts Shawn Johnson and Laurie Hernandez, all of whom won Mirror Ball Trophies. But this competition is so tough that even elite athletes have found themselves on the disabled list for tears and fractures before they could finish — this happened just last fall when football veteran Ray Lewis had to leave the competition early.
A few celebs found themselves injured before their seasons even began, which required last-minute replacements. A couple were felled by sudden illness. And one dropped out to focus on her family as she was in the midst of a divorce. It’s a testament to how far they pushed themselves on the show, but you’ve got to listen to your body so you can live to dance another day.