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Olympic Games

Paavo Nurmi

Finnish middle and long-distance runner Paavo Nurmi won nine gold and three silver medals at the Olympic Games in Antwerp (1920), Paris (1924), and Amsterdam (1928). Usain Bolt and Carl Lewis also won nine gold medals each, second only to the Finn with silver. 1)

Size of a soccer field

The size of a soccer field was originally described using yards. Thus, for example, players should move 10 yards away from each other when taking a free kick and the penalty area is 18 by 44 yards. 2)

Number of competitions

The number of competitions in the Summer Olympics increased rapidly between 1980 (203 competitions in Moscow) and 2000 (300 competitions in Sydney). Then it was decided that the number of competitions was frozen and new ones could only appear if the old ones were removed. 3)

Ray Ewry

Raymond Clarence “Ray” Ewry contracted polio as a child and was in a wheelchair for a time. He did not learn to walk until he was 20 and began practicing standing jumps. His standing long jump record (3.48 m) is still unbeaten today, as this competition was abandoned in the 1930s. At three Olympic Games (1900-1908), he won 10 gold medals in the long, high, and triple jumps. 4)

1956 Olympic Equestrian Games

Because of the restrictive laws on animal transport in Australia, and to avoid the troublesome transport of horses to the other side of the world, it was decided to move the equestrian events to Europe in 1956. They were held in Stockholm; due to the different seasons in both hemispheres, they took place almost six months before the actual games in Melbourne. 5)

Pierre de Coubertin

The idea of the modern Olympic Games was born in the mind of Frenchman Pierre de Coubertin in 1888. Coubertin was a historian and educator, fascinated by the ancient idea of the Games. Ancient games were held until 394 AD, when they were banned, as a pagan custom. Thanks to Coubertin's fortune, the International Olympic Committee was formed to organize the games and oversee the integrity of the competitors. The first modern Games were not held until 1896 in Athens. 6)

The first Olympic opening ceremony

The first Olympic opening ceremony took place in 1908 in London. The parade at this ceremony was led by the Greek team - behind it marched the other teams in alphabetical order, and at the end the hosts of the event. 7)

Five Olympic circles

In 1913. Pierre de Coubertin established the symbol of the five Olympic circles. The flag was first hoisted on the flagpole at the 1920 Antwerp Games. 8)

The last authentic Olympic gold medals

The last authentic Olympic gold medals were presented in Stockholm in 1912. Medals are designed specifically for each Games. They should be, at least, 3 mm thick and 60 mm in diameter. Those for first places are presently covered with a layer of bullion weighing 6 grams, while those for second places are made of 92.5 percent silver. 9)

Torch lighting ceremony

The Olympic torch lighting ceremony first took place in 1928, during the Amsterdam Games. 10)

Carrying fire

The custom of carrying fire from Olympia began in 1936 (from the Berlin Games). 11)

Carrying fire

The three-stage Olympic podium on which medals are presented was first introduced in the 1932 Los Angeles Games. 12)

Women participation

In 1900, at the Paris Games, women were already allowed to compete in some events. 13)

Olympic oath

In 1920, the oath of athletes was introduced for the first time at the Games. 14)

First champion

The first winner of the modern Olympic Games was American James B. Connolly in Athens in 1896, who won the triple jump competition. 15)

Lorna Johnstone

The oldest participant in the Games is Lorna Johnstone of Great Britain. In 1972, at the age of 70, she achieved 12th place in dressage. 16)

Oscar Swahn

The oldest medalist at the Olympic Games is Oscar Swahn of Sweden. He won a silver medal in shooting in 1920 in Antwerp at the age of 72. 17)

First Paralympics

In 1960, the first Paralympics were held in Rome. 18)

olympic_games.txt · Last modified: 2022/11/02 03:02 by aga