How Have The Olympic Games Changed Over The Years?

The Olympic games originally began in 776 B.C. and started with just one single race. As the years progressed so did the changes in the games themselves. They continued to add more sports and disciplines as the years went on to make it even more of a competition and not just limit the possibilities to one race. They started to include such events as boxing, discus throwing, races by horse and chariots, javelin throwing, the long jump, running and wrestling, just to name a few.

Later they decided to introduce the pentathlon to test the competitors abilities in five different events. Those five events included the long jump, running, and wrestling, as well as the javelin throw and discus throws. Only men were given the opportunity to compete in these events and the winners were awarded with a crown.

There was more that would be obtained than just this crown of olives and that included the ability of the winner to be idolized in their hometown after having won the competition. The victor would become rich and displayed in art such as paintings, stamps, coins, pottery and literature. If you were from the town of Athens you would also be compensated with a free meal in the town hall every day for the rest of your life. It was almost like the winner had received a pension plan of sorts.

In 1896 the first Olympic games were hosted by Greece. There were less than 300 athletes from 14 different countries. There were 43 different events that were to be competed in by strictly men. Times seemed to change fast however, because by the second Olympic games women were allowed to compete in the events. At that point there were over 24 different countries that were represented and over a thousand athletes to compete in over 100 events.

As the years passed the Olympics began different traditions and made new and improved memories. It was not until 1904 that they began the tradition of the gold, silver, and bronze medals for the top three competitors. In 1920, they introduced the flag with the different colored rings on it. They also introduced the athlete’s oath during this time. During the 1924 games the motto was coined meaning swifter, stronger, higher and the first ever winter games were held.

During the 1928 games they started the tradition of the lighting of the torch. This spawned into the Olympic Torch relay in 1936 when they ran for the first time. The Olympics were never televised until 1956 and it wasn’t until 1968 when someone was first banned for the use of drugs.

As the years progressed the Olympics kept incorporating new and exciting traditions to keep changing the way the Olympics are handled. There will continue to be changes to the way things are done and how the Olympic games are handled but, you can see that they are trying to make it as fitting as they can for all of the athletes involved. Times have changed but, the love of the games still remains the same and will continue for many years to come.

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