The Olympic Games are considered to be the world’s foremost sports competition with more than 200 nations participating. The Olympic Games are held every four years, with the Summer and Winter Games alternating by occurring every four years but two years apart. The are the leading international sporting event featuring summer and winter sports competitions in which thousands of athletes across the planet participate in a variety of competitions.
Their creation was inspired by the ancient Olympic Games, which were held in Olympia, Greece, from the 8th century BC to the 4th century AD. Baron Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1894. The IOC is the governing body of the Olympic Movement, with the Olympic Charter defining its structure and authority.
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Baron Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1894. The IOC is the governing body of the Olympic Movement, with the Olympic Charter defining its structure and authority.
The Summer Olympic Games or the Games of the Olympiad, first held in 1896, are an international multi-sport event, occurring every four years, organized by the International Olympic Committee. Medals are awarded in each event, with gold medals for first place, silver for second and bronze for third, a tradition that started in 1904. The Winter Olympic Games were also created due to the success of the Summer Olympics.
Five countries – Greece, Australia, France, Great Britain and Switzerland – have been represented at all Summer Olympic Games.
The Olympic symbol, better known as the Olympic rings, consists of five intertwined rings and represents the unity of the five inhabited continents (Africa, America, Asia, Oceania, Europe). The colored version of the rings—blue, yellow, black, green, and red—over a white field forms the Olympic flag. These colors were chosen because every nation had at least one of them on its national flag.
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The Olympic motto, Citius, Altius, Fortius, a Latin expression meaning “Faster, Higher, and Stronger” was proposed by Pierre de Coubertin in 1894 and has been official since 1924.
The Olympic Games program consists of 35 sports, 30 disciplines and nearly 400 events. Olympic sports are governed by international sports federations (IFs) recognized by the IOC as the global supervisors of those sports. There are 35 federations represented at the IOC.
The Games have grown so much that nearly every nation is now represented. This growth has created numerous challenges, including boycotts, doping, bribery, and acts of terrorism. Every two years the Olympics and its media exposure provide unknown athletes with the chance to attain national and sometimes international fame. The Games also constitute an opportunity for the host city and country to showcase themselves to the world.
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