MTV’s The Challenge is a reality competition show that invites its players to face off in extreme missions with the hopes of winning the title and accompanying massive cash prize. As the show is physically intense, many cast members have gotten injured while competing. One former champion says they sustained permanent nerve damage due to their time on the reality show.
Sarah Greyson won ‘The Challenge: The Gauntlet’
Oklahoma native Sarah Greyson made her reality TV debut on Road Rules: Campus Crawl in 2002. She returned for spinoff The Challenge: The Gauntlet in 2003 as a part of the Road Rules team.
Although Sarah only competed in one season, her historic performance earned her a spot in the docuseries The Challenge: Untold History as an unforgettable underdog.
Champ Katie (Doyle) Cooley explained cast members’ early strategies when eliminations first entered the game included sending in the same person until they went home.
Unfortunately, it turned out to be Sarah who found herself immediately voted into the first Gauntlet. She went on to win a total of five eliminations, and her team won the finals, pulling what Sarah called one of the biggest upsets in franchise history.
Sarah said she sustained permanent nerve damage from ‘The Challenge’
Teammates Rachel Robinson, Veronica Portillo, and Darrell Taylor acknowledged that her victories protected them throughout the competition, saving them from having to go into elimination and eventually helping them win $25,000.
She and The Duel partners Casey Cooper and Wes Bergmann are currently the only players to win five eliminations in a season.
After the special premiered, Sarah reposted a clip from The Gauntlet, calling it “the best moment the show has ever produced.”
She later added that she lost 15 pounds due to stress in one month. Still referring to the clip showing one of her memorable eliminations in which she had to hang upside down, Sarah claimed that she got “some fun permanent nerve damage from the knees down.”
Several cast members have gotten injured while competing on ‘The Challenge’
As the competition show physically challenges the competitors, some refer to it as the “fifth sport,” cast members have injured themselves while competing.
In 2006, veteran Coral Smith and rookie teammate Evan Starkman started Fresh Meat dominantly, winning five out of the first six daily missions. They seemed prime to win the competition until their medical disqualification due to her knee injury and his hernia.
The Real World star Shauvon Torres memorably believed she popped her breast implant in The Ruins (2009) after taking a hard fall during a water challenge and withdrew from the competition. Free Agents (2014) featured two notable injuries, including Chet Cannon’s busted chin and Cara Maria Sorbello’s hand during an elimination.
Additionally, Double Agents currently holds the record for the most disqualifications in a season, with Nicole Zanatta, Liv Jawando, Natalie Anderson, Nam Vo, and Kyle Christie all getting sent home due to injuries. Kaycee Clark also injured her knee while competing in the finals. The Challenge 38 premiere on October 12 on MTV.