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Last updated at 12:26 BST, Friday, 28 June 2013

Tightrope walker


Report and vocabulary


450 metres above a gorge near the Grand Canyon.

With no safety harness, American acrobat Nik Wallenda walks the tightrope.

Wind made the cable sway during the 22 nail-biting minutes it took him to cross.

But towards the end he felt confident enough to kneel and blow a kiss to fans waiting on the other side.


a deep, narrow valley

safety harness

a system of belts to hold a person and stop them falling

walks the tightrope

walks along a 'tightrope': a rope or wire fixed high above the ground

(this phrase also appears as the idiom 'to walk a tightrope', which means to deal with a difficult situation where a small mistake could have bad results)



blow a kiss

kiss your hand and blow it in the direction of someone


Use one of the words or phrases below to complete each of these sentences from news reports.
Note that you may have to change the form of a word to complete the sentence correctly.

gorge / safety harness / walks the tightrope / nail-biting / blow a kiss

1. The _________ was steep and dangerous with a river flowing through it.

2. One of the athletes who did rise to the occasion was Lachie Stewart. In a _________ race Stewart swept aside the clear favourite, Australian Ron Clarke, to take a stunning gold in the 10,000 metres.

3. "I love you Whitney," he said while __________ towards the sky.

4. Spider-Man double Christopher Tierney, who fell 30 feet on Monday, is due out of hospital this weekend.

Despite wearing a ___________, video of the incident showed him falling from a ledge into a stage pit.

5. This summer, Wallenda is set to become the first person in more than a century to ___________ over Niagara Falls, after being granted rare permission.




How did you do?






blowing a kiss


safety harness


walk a tightrope