Olympics adds 5 new sports

Gian Carlo Baldonado, Staff Writer

On the same grounds that the Youth Olympic Games were established, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) added five new games to cultivate youth interest in the Olympic Games.
The five new summer Olympic sports—baseball/softball, karate, skateboard, sports climbing, and surfing–are to be included in the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games.
“We want to take sports to the youth,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in the official Olympic website. “With many options that young people have, we cannot expect any more that they will come automatically to us. We have to go to them.”
The addition of these sports is one of the many ways the IOC is trying to reform the Olympic Movement.
Thanks to the Olympic Agenda 2020, the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee is the first to take advantage of the unique opportunity that allows host cities to add one or more new sports to the program.
Each new sport was considered based on its youth appeal and value to the Tokyo Games.
“We know younger people tend to stay indoors nowadays,” Japan Wrestling Federation President Tomiaki Fukuda said in a “New York Times” article, “and we believe we included events that will drive people outside. It will create a new image for the Olympic Games.”
For example, baseball/softball and karate are popular in Japan, while skateboard, sports climbing, and surfing are popular among the youth around the world.
“I think the new sports will be awesome,” senior Genevie Concha said, “because a lot of people who’ve [already] been training [for the new sports] can finally say they’re going to the Olympics. All their hard work will pay off.”
“I love karate,” senior Candace S. Khoeum said. “I did it when I was a little kid.”
The new events will add 18 new medal ceremonies and a total of 474 new athletes. Baseball will amass half of the new athletes with 234 baseball and softball players combined. Karate and skateboarding will each bring 80 new athletes, and sports climbing and surfing 40 new athletes.
“This package represents both traditional and emerging youth-focused events, all of which are popular in Japan and internationally,” the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee said in the official Tokyo 2020 website. “They will serve as a driving force to further promote the Olympic Movement and its values, with a focus on youth appeal, and will add value to the Games by engaging the Japanese populations and new audiences worldwide.”