The Olympic is a proud international sporting tradition that pits the best athletes the world over. Long on tradition, the International Olympic Committee makes sure that it updates the current Olympic events by adding new events. There have been several new Olympic sports since 2000.
The thrust of the International Olympic Committee (or the IOC) is to introduce more women’s events. It is with the hope that the added women’s events will draw more women spectators to the Olympics. They were successful since the recent Olympics in London drew in a lot of women fans. Let’s check out below the Olympic sports introduced since the year 2000:
2000 Sydney Olympics
Olympic games 2000 or the Sydney Olympics was known to have brought to spectators the letter ‘T’ with three new events all starting with the letter.
Triathlon—is a multi-discipline sport that involves running, biking and swimming. The triathlon was first in the 70s in America as a workout alternative. It has since gained a huge following, drawing enthusiasts from the ultramarathoners, long-distance swimmers and road cyclists. It was finally welcomed as an Olympic sport in Sydney.
Taekwondo—this ancient Korean martial art has gained quite a following. Millions of practitioners in 200 countries hold belts in the different belt classifications in Tae Kwon Do. The first time Tae Kwon Do appeared as an Olympic event was during the 1988 Seoul Olympics. But it was only a demonstration sport back then. It became an official sporting event in 2000.
Trampoline—was used in gymnastic events in Sydney where gymnasts performed acrobatic moves while jumping on it. The trampoline’s previous appearance as an Olympic event dated back to 1934 and it took 66 years to make a comeback.
2004 Athens Olympics
The 2004 Olympics did not have much, except for the women’s wrestling and the women’s Sabre event. This was perhaps the start of the IOC’s thrust to introduce more events for women.
Women’s wrestling—was a welcome addition to the male dominated event of wrestling. It’s only fitting that women were given the opportunity to compete in wrestling because wrestling (the sport we know today) was known to have its origin in ancient Greece.
Women’s Fencing (Sabre)—previously, women were only allowed to compete in the epee and the foil events. The sabre is a faster form of fencing because the sabreur can score using the edge of the blade (unlike the other two events where you only score with the tip). For this reason, the sabre event is a faster and more exciting form of fencing.
2008 Beijing Olympics
Showcased China as a powerhouse in Olympic competition. There were several games that encountered changes and there were three additions to the events (which totaled more than 300).
Individual BMX—featured BMX races in the men’s and women’s category. Cycling has been a mainstay at the Olympics but they never used BMX until 2008. Common bikes used before 2008 were road bikes and mountain bikes (which was introduced in 1996).
Women’s 3000m Steeplechase—is a track event where the runner hurdles obstacles. Steeplechases were actually derived from horse racing and has since become a common fixture in track and field. The 3000m Steeplechase is an old event but only men competed in it until 2008 when it was opened to both sexes.
Marathon Swimming—or also called as long-distance swimming. This event is held in open water and covers great distances. Marathon swimming differs from the marathon running because the distances differ from one event to another.
2012 London Olympics
London opened up more doors for women to compete. The biggest news in terms of new events was the inclusion of women’s boxing.
Women’s Boxing—is not new to the Olympics having first appeared as a demonstration sport as early as 1904. After 1904, many countries banned the sport thus prompting the Olympics to not include it in its roster of sporting events. The sport has since gained acceptance and was finally an Olympic sport in London before appearing again in the previous Olympics in China as a demonstration sport.
The IOC is always on the lookout on how to make the events better. They are constantly reviewing the sporting events and decide on which sports to add and which ones to take out. It is with the hope that more and more people will get the chance to compete and also enjoy.
With this list of Olympic sport since 2000, did we miss out on your favorite?