Jason Gardiner may like to think he’s the most fearsome part of Dancing on Ice, but there’s something far scarier for contestants on the hit ITV show – the potential for injury.
Over the past 11 series, we’ve seen banged heads, smashed ribs and celebs slicing their own heads open.
It’s little wonder that host Phillip Schofield once claimed that Dancing on Ice is “the most dangerous show” on television (although Channel 4’s winter sports competition The Jump certainly gives it a run for its money).
The latest season has already seen Brian McFadden partially dislocate his shoulder, while Pussycat Doll Melody Thornton is literally putting her life in her partner’s hands by attempting the legendary headbanger this week.
While we’ve got our fingers crossed that she manages to avoid injury, here’s a list of contestants who weren’t quite so lucky…
Warning: those of a nervous disposition may wish to stop reading now
1. Jennifer Ellison cuts her head open with her own skate
In the 2012 series, the former Brookside actor went all out to impress the judges with a fierce ‘scorpion kick’, extending her leg towards the back of her head.
While all went well in rehearsal, the 35-year-old wasn’t quite so lucky when it came to the live performance, nicking the back of her head with her own blade.
Like a true pro, she managed to finish her routine – before being rushed to medics, with blood visible in her blonde hair.
And despite literally maiming herself in the search for a high score, Ellison was still only awarded a paltry 19.
2. The late great Keith Chegwin cracks his ribs and breaks his shoulder
Having expressed his excitement at taking part in the show, Keith Chegwin eagerly stepped out onto the ice for the first day of rehearsals – and immediately slipped over.
His fall saw him crack three ribs and break his shoulder in three places – forcing him to pull out of the competition.
“I wanted so much to be part of the show and part of the team,” he tearfully said at the time. “It’s all gone now.”
His injuries didn’t seem to put him off though – Cheggers made a comeback for the 2013 edition of the show, and was a creditable seventh to be eliminated.
3. David Seaman drops his partner during the highly dangerous headbanger
You’d think as a former England goalkeeper, he’d be fairly good at holding on to things – but David Seaman dropped the ball (and his partner Pam O’Connor) when attempting the notorious headbanger, a move in which the female dancer is swung around by her feet with her face just inches from the ice.
O’Connor was rushed to hospital and needed stitches in her chin, but bravely returned to keep skating with Seaman.
4. Antony Cotton fractures his ribs
The show hasn’t got any safer in recent years, with the 2018 edition of Dancing on Ice seeing Coronation Street star Antony Cotton fracture two ribs when his partner, Brandee Malto, landed on top of him.
“The worst part was I couldn’t breathe,” he said. “It happened so fast.”
The 43-year-old was rushed to hospital but decided to keep skating despite his injury.
“The show must go on,” he said in a statement. “Hopefully the painkillers and sequins will see me through.”
5. Vanilla Ice cracks his eye
It was a case of getting Vanilla some ice after he suffered a nasty injury in the 2011 edition of the show.
The 90s rapper struggled on the slippery surface, suffering a fall and cracking his head on the ice, smashing his eye in the process.
“I felt like I’ve been hit by Mike Tyson,” he said as he got stitches.
However, his fall didn’t impede him from progressing in the competition – he was eventually eliminated sixth.
6. Beth Tweddle nearly knocks herself out
Former Olympic gymnast Beth Tweddle took part (and won) the eighth series of Dancing on Ice in 2013 – but not without facing her own share of injuries.
Attempting a difficult trick known as the Whirlybird, Tweddle was spun around by partner Daniel Whiston, but ended up smashing her head against the ice after they lost their grip on one another.
Professional skaters Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean rushed over to see how she was doing, but Tweddle insisted she was “fine.”
“She gathered herself together and got back on the ice immediately,” said Whiston.
Dancing on Ice continues Sunday at 6pm on ITV