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He is a WWE Hall of Famer, Olympic Gold Medalist, multiple-time world champion, and an authority figure on-screen for WWE. In addition to wrestling, Angle continues to work in WWE as an on-screen authority figure.

In the course of his wrestling career, Kurt Angle has broken his neck countless times. Did you know that he won the Olympic Gold Medal with a “broken freakin’ neck”?

The answer is five. Four of these injuries came during his WWE career. The first came during his national trials before the Olympics.

How and when did Kurt Angle suffer his neck injuries?

Kurt Angle was dropped on the neck by his opponent during the semi-final round of the national trials. As a result, ‘The Wrestling Machine’ sustained multiple injuries to the neck.

Aside from the injuries to the bone surrounding the neck, the WWE Hall of Famer also suffered injuries to the muscles around the neck. Luckily, none of these injuries prevented him from qualifying for and winning a gold medal at the Olympics.

When Brock Lesnar whipped Kurt Angle to the turnbuckles in 2003, Angle’s neck broke. Angle’s neck was whiplashed and lacerated at that time. Although both superstars had a stiff neck injury due to shooting stars, Lesnar still wrestled Angle at WrestleMania XIX and broke his neck again in eight months.

2 times neck break in the same year – 2004

After breaking his neck yet again in 2004, Kurt Angle was choke slammed off a ledge by Big Show on the April 15, 2004 episode of SmackDown. This caused further damage to the American Hero.

In WWE No Way Out 2006, Kurt Angle sustained a neck injury while he faced The Undertaker. He then left WWE for TNA because of his various injuries and mental fitness issues. In Kurt Angle’s show, he shared his thoughts regarding his departure from WWE.

“I just couldn’t keep myself together, that’s the main reason I left WWE in 2006. I just couldn’t keep my body together. My hamstring, my groin, my abdominal, shoulder, neck, everything was just -I was falling apart,” said Kurt Angle.

Angel returned to WWE for a short period in 2017 but lost his final match at WrestleMania 35 to Baron Corbin. He hasn’t wrestled since then.

On an episode of The Kurt Angle Show, the 1996 Olympic Gold Medalist discussed winning that medal with a broken neck

Angle described how his doctor had to allow him to take the medicine before each match even after it became clear his neck was broken. He described how taking medicine from the doctor beforehand helped him perform better.

“You can’t do this today but back then, it was a little more giving,” Angle said. “Doctor would give you the option of possibly going for it even if you are injured. There was less liability back then”

“I never thought about quitting, everything was about what I had to do to make it back. The doctor told me I would have to take off a month of wrestling, that I couldn’t wrestle because I would do further damage to my neck. He said you could do limited weight training and conditioning but you have to stay off the mats for a good month and let your neck heal.

“He gave me a healing agent, non-steroidal because you can’t have steroids in the Olympics, you get tested all the time. It was a healing agent that helped tremendously, I could start feeling my fingers again. His game plan was to go to the Olympic trials with the doctor and he would stick me with 12 shots of novocaine five minutes before each match.

“I would do that and I couldn’t feel my neck, it worked. I was worried about my neck the whole time and then when I got shot up like a racehorse, I didn’t feel it anymore so I was like okay, I can wrestle like this. It worked out tremendously but the thing is an hour after the match was over I was in excruciating pain again. It was a really difficult situation for me and I knew I was doing further damage to my neck.”

Going to TNA

Despite breaking his neck four more times in WWE, Angle said, “I didn’t care about my neck. All I cared about was getting back into the ring. Now at 52 years old, he says he’s in a lot of pain. The Olympics, my broken neck, wrestling in the WWE with a broken neck, going to TNA, everything like that has cost me. I don’t regret doing any of it. I’m paying the full price for what I did. As I look back I wonder if maybe I went a little too hard at the Olympics, in the WWE, in the TNA, and everything else that gave me a broken neck.”

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