Comment: Five new sports have been added to the Tokyo Olympics. Here is what could be included next


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Olympic Agenda 2020, adopted by the IOC in 2014, allows for greater flexibility in the process, however, with hosts invited to submit proposals through the traditional campaign channel, where international federations lobby the CIO for Inclusion then persuade its members to vote for them, remain open.

There are another 25 “core” sports included in each game, the rest may change with each game. New sports in Tokyo are not guaranteed to stay. Karate and baseball were not offered by Paris 2024 but surfing and climbing will remain. The breakdance will be added.

A lot of it comes down to money. Sports need to convince the IOC that they have as much to offer off the pitch in terms of marketing and revenue from a broadcast and sponsorship perspective as they do on it. Skateboarding performed well in terms of engagement on social media with the 18-34 age group, a core requirement for the IOC.

The IOC has been particularly interested in sports that appeal to the next generation, as young people are not as interested in the Olympics as their parents and grandparents.

“We want to bring sport to young people,” Bach said in 2016. “With the many options available to young people, we can no longer expect them to automatically come to us. We have to go to them.

The next Olympic Games, due to be held in Paris in 2024, will also include breakdancing, as well as surfing, skateboarding and climbing sports which the committee says are “closely associated with youth and reward creativity and athletic performance.

All four are easy to learn and the participants form very active communities on social networks. Organizers hope their inclusion will encourage millions of people to watch the games.


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