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Badminton at the Olympic Games

Badminton was first held as a demonstration sport at the 1972 Summer Olympics. In 1988 it again appeared at the Olympics as an exhibition sport. Badminton premiered as a full-medal Olympic sport at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona, Spain, and has continued as a full-medal sport since then. The Mixed Doubles were included in the Olympic Games for the first time in Atlanta in 1996.

Basketball at the Olympic Games

Basketball was admitted as an Olympic sport for the first time in 1936 in Berlin.


In 1936, the first ever final was played on a dirt court in the rain, which made dribbling impossible. The United States team beat Canada 19 to 8. In 1972, the U.S. basketball team lost a game for the first time, defeated by the Soviet Union. However, the US team refused to accept the silver medal, claiming that the clock had been improperly restarted in the final moments.

Boxing at the Olympic Games

Boxing has been contested at every Summer Olympic Games since 1904, except for in 1912 in Stockholm as Swedish law banned the sport at the time. In 2009, the IOC voted to include women's boxing at the 2012 London Games, so now there are men and women competing in all sports.

2012 Boxing Events

Changes: Women's boxing has been introduced in three weight classes. In the men's division, the weight class Featherweight has been dropped, and the weight limits adjusted for Fly and Bantam classes.

Team Handball at the Olympics

Handball was first introduced at the Olympic Games at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, in a competition for men only, and played outdoors on grass. It was dropped from the program after this, and not played again at the Olympics until the 1972. The women's handball competition was added to the program at the 1976 Summer Games.

Shooting at the Olympics

Shooting has long been a part of the Olympic Games program.

Pigeon shooting was a sport in 1900. Fortunately this shooting event was short lived. It was the only time animals were killed on purpose during an Olympic event [more] Women's shooting events were first included in the Olympics in 1984. There were three events, three position rifle, air rifle and sport pistol. The first brothers to win Olympic gold medals were Americans John and Sumner Paine - they came first in the military pistol and free pistol shooting events respectively in 1896.

Right-handed Hungarian Karoly Takcaz, a member of the Hungary pistol-shooting team, had his shooting hand shattered by a grenade in 1938. After this setback he taught himself to shoot with his left, and 10 years later won the gold in the rapid-fire pistol event at the 1948 London Games.

Archery at the Olympics

Archery first appeared at the 1900 Olympics in Paris. There were archery events for the next few Olympics, but then it disappeared from the Olympic program for more than 50 years. It reappeared at Munich in 1972 and has remained a fixture ever since.

Canoeing and Kayaking at the Olympics

Canoe and Kayak races at the Olympic Games are held on both flat water with competitors assigned to lanes (Sprint Events), and in slalom events. There are single, double and four boats. The kayak boats are identified by the letter K while the canoes are prefixed by a C, with the following number indicating the number of paddlers. Below is a list of all the events that are currently on the Olympic program. Sprint events have been contested since Montreal 1976.

Diving at the Olympics

There are several events as part of the Olympic diving program: 10m platform, 3m springboard individual and synchronized events (all for men and women). The newest addition is synchronized diving for the springboard and platform, which was added to the program for 2000. In synchronized diving two divers complete a dive simultaneously in which the dives are perfectly timed for height and distance from the board or platform, speed of rotation, and angle of entry into the water.

Sailing at the Olympics

Sailing has been one of the Olympic sports since the first Olympic Games. The first evernts in 1896 were cancelled, and it was not included in the 1904 program, but has been in every other Olympic program.

Gymnastics at the Olympics

Gymnastics is one of five sports that have been contested at every summer Olympic games since 1896. The others are:Athletics, Cycling, Fencing and Swimming.

Judo at the Olympics

Judo was first included for men at the Olympic Games in 1964 Games in Tokyo. Judo was not included in the following Games in 1968, though was reinstated as an Olympic sport from then on. Women's judo was introduced as a demonstration sport at the 1988 Olympics, and became an official sport in 1992.

Football / Soccer at the Olympics

Football was the first team sport added to the Olympics, in 1900. At first only a men's competition was included. A women's event was added in 1996. The 1900 and 1904 tournaments were originally composed of demonstration matches, but have subsequently been upgraded to official status by the IOC with medals attributed to the teams based upon the match results.

Swimming at the Olympics

Swimming is one of five sports that have been contested at every summer Olympic games since 1896. The others are:Athletics, Cycling, Fencing, andGymnastics.


In 1896, a boat dropped everyone into the icy waters of the Mediterranean, and the first swimmer to shore won. That fist gold medalist in swimming was Hungarian Alfred Hajos.

Table Tennis at the Olympics

Table tennis has been part of the Summer Olympic Games since 1988. Participants compete in both men and women's singles and doubles events.


The table tennis events have been dominated by athletes from China.

The best all-time performing Table Tennis Player at the Olympic Games is Wang Nan from China with 4 gold and one silver from 20002008. The best performing male player is Lin Ma also from China with 3 golds. See more on the Greatest Table Tennis Players at the Olympics.

Tennis at the Olympics

Tennis has a long history at the Olympic Games. Tennis was played at the Olympics until 1924, then reinstituted in 1988. Starting from the 2004 Athens Olympics, results from the Olympics count towards both the ATP and WTA world rankings.

Olympic Tennis Trivia

John Boland of Ireland won the first gold medal awarded in Olympic tennis, and he also won a second gold that same year playing doubles.

Volleyball at the Olympics

Volleyball was first played at the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris as a demonstration sport as part of an American sports demonstration event. It has been officially played at the Olympic Games since 1964. Beach Volleyball was introduced officially in 1996.