Modern Olympic Games
Pierre de Fredy, the Baron de Coubertin was only 17 when he started developing a strong belief that sport and athletic competition can benefit humankind and encourage peace among the nations of the world. In his opinion, participating in competitions can result in improving character in each individual and unite nations of the world in peaceful contests. Like the ancient Greeks before him, he was driven by his commitment in Olympism, by determination and lofty ideals: morality, mutual respect and respect for culture, education and ethical principles.
Thanks to the Baron Pierre de Coubertin we have the chance to experience once again one of the ideals of Olympism – peace in the world -, and re-create or strengthen a way of life based on balanced body, will and mind. In 1913, the Baron introduced the five Olympic Rings (Antarctica is excluded and the two Americas are considered as one). The International Olympic Committee introduced the Olympic flame in 1934 as a link between the ancient and modern games, a symbol for eternal youth, purity and unity.
There have been important changes in the evolution of the Games during the 20th and 21st centuries: the Winter, the Paralympic and the Youth Olympic Games. The developments of the economic, political and technological realities determined the Olympics to allow participation of professional athletes and also lead to sponsorship and commercialization. Neither theories, nor ideals could prevent the Olympics from cancellation; in 1916, 1940 and 1944 the World Wars proved stronger than ethics.
Later, these mistakes were rectified and the multi-sport events attracted more and more athletes: and volunteers:
• There were 15 sports in 1928 (Amsterdam) and 46 nations were represented
• 46,967 people helped at the Olympic venues in 2,000 in Sydney
• 10,625 athletes competed in Athens in 2004 accompanied by 5,501 team officials from 201 countries. The costs exceeded €10 billion for hosting not including construction. The budget for security was about €2 billion and more than 70,000 policemen patrolled Athens and other Olympic venues.
• 11,028 athletes from 204 countries competed in 28 sports and 302 events in Beijing, China (2008). The officials informed the Media the costs were as high as for Athens, but different sources reported that about $40 billion had been spent in China.
In the next posts:
What do you know, what do you want to find out about London 2012 Olympic Games, what are the future and the potential city candidates?
Why are 22,000 schools and colleges participating in the Olympic Games?
How will 12 million children aound the world be encouraged to become actively involved in sports? Your comments are highly appreciated. Share this post with the others!