(UPI) A Massachusetts gymnastics coach's quick catch is being credited with helping a 13-year-old gymnast avoid severe injury from a fall that was caught on camera.
A video recorded by 13-year-old gymnast Noah Viera's mother shows him warming up on the high bar last week under the supervision of coach Cal Booker at the New England Academy of Gymnastics.
Viera said he was practicing giants, 360-degree rotations around the bar, when he felt himself slip.
"It's like a new skill for me, a little bit, so just like doing it is scary, but like me falling off is scary," Viera told WCVB-TV. Going on the turn, doing the giants, I felt like I was slipping off, but I didn't think anything would happen.
The video shows Viera go flying through the air and Booker leaps into action to break his fall and prevent him from landing on his head, which could have caused a severe neck injury.
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"The high bar is nine feet and as he's swinging around it adds another two feet. If he lands on his head that could be catastrophic," Booker told WBZ-TV.
"The right place at the right time. Luckily I got underneath him and luckily he's a good enough athlete to know how to turn over," Booker said.
The gymnastics academy said Viera was not injured and went on to receive one of his best-ever scores on the high bar later that same day.Copyright 2018 by United Press International