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Summer Olympic Games

February 14, 2012 678 No of hits
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Summer Olympic Games

The Summer Olympics are an international competition of several different sports that occurs every four years. The Olympics are held in various locations each time the competition is held, and countries bid to earn the honor of hosting the international sporting event. The sporting events that take place have changed and fluctuated greatly over the years. The Olympics have grown from just a competition with around 40 events and only male athletes, to over 300 events with both males and females competing. In all, 56 different sporting events have been a part of the Olympics Games. The 2012 games will feature 26 sports, down from 28, as softball and baseball will no longer be events.

Modern sports include archery, athletics, badminton, basketball, boxing, canoeing, cycling, diving, football (also known as soccer), gymnastics, handball, judo, modern pentathlon, rowing, sailing, shooting, swimming, synchronized swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, triathlon, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting and wrestling. Almost all of the sports feature both male and female competitions, as well as several other different classifications and medal competitions depending on the sport itself.

Each sport has a different way of identifying the athletes that are able to compete in the Olympics. In the United States, sports like track and field and swimming have Olympic trials, where athletes must compete against other vying athletes for the best time--and a spot on the Olympic squad. Sports like basketball and soccer are based less on the results of a one event time or placing, but rather those teams are put together based on the skill sets of players.

The Olympics date back to the eighth century BCE, where they were held in Ancient Greece. The event was revived in 1894 when Baron Pierre de Coubertin founded the Olympics governing body, the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The first modern Olympic games were held in Athens, Greece in 1896. The Olympic games have been held every four years since then, except for three during wartime.

The 1916, 1940 and 1944 Olympics were not held due to World War I and II. Several countries including Canada, Japan, the United States and West Germany boycotted the 1980 Olympic games, held in Moscow. In all sixty-six different nations chose not to participate in the 1980 Olympics. In retaliation, the Soviet Union, along with 13 of their allies, boycotted the 1984 Olympics, which were held in Los Angeles. The Olympics have provided grounds for different groups to hold political protests, some peaceful and some very violent ones.

The early Olympic games focused on amateurism, and did not allow professional athletes to compete. Athletes who had been involved with any type of professional play and competed in the games anyways were stripped of their medals. However, the Olympics shifted from only allowing amateurs and now allow professional athletes to compete in all of the events.

Athletes compete for their respective countries, and the top athlete in each Olympic sport is honored with a gold medal. Some sports are individual and team while others are just one or the other. However, in each sport the athlete or athletes compete for the first place honor of gold. Second place finishers are rewarded with a silver medal, and third place athletes earn a bronze.

The games start and end with an official ceremony, where all of the athletes from countries around the world are honored. The games have an Olympic torch, which is lit during the open ceremony--and stays lit throughout all of the competition.

Tags:   Summer Olympic Games   Olympics   Summer Olympics   Olympic torch   Athens   Ancient Greece  

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The Summer Olympics are an international competition of several different sports that occurs every four years. The Olympics are held in various locations each time the competition is held, and countries bid to earn the honor of hosting the international sporting event. The sporting events that take...

By: Richard Martine Created 76 months ago

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