Although a great all-round gymnast, Nobuyuki Aihara excelled in the floor exercise. At the 1956 Olympics, he tied for second place in that event. Four years later, in Rome, Aihara was the best on the floor, taking home his second gold of the Games, together with his part in the Japanese team victory. He had also won a silver medal with the team in 1956. Two years after his Olympic title, Aihara also added the world title on the floor to his tally - a shared title with Yukio Endo. Aihara won three more medals at the World Championships: gold (1962) and silver (1958) with the team, and silver on the rings. He also placed fourth on three occasions. Aihara had hoped to compete again at the Tokyo Olympics, but injury ended this dream, as well as his career. Aihara later became a coach, leading the national team of Venezuela for a while. He married national team colleague, Toshiko Shirasu-Aihara, a bronze medallist at the 1964 Games. Their son, Yutaka also became an Olympic gymnast, winning bronze at the 1992 Olympics. His older brother, Makoto, also competed internationally in the sport.