What is Athletics?

Athletics is a combination of different sports in one, it is certainly a unique kind of a sport which includes various competitions in running, jumping, walking and throwing. The most popular part of Athletics is the track and field events which include running, cross country running, race walking and road running. Athletics can be played both indoors and outdoors and it has been governed by the International Association of Athletics Federations. Athletics involves both the genders.

The Ancient Meaning of Athletics

In the ancient Greece the word ‘athletes’ meant combatant in the public games. The most common term to describe athletics in modern days is to test the human’s physical abilities and how he or she can show it while competing for it in public. Most of the nations have accepted the term athletics whereas the North America prefers to call it Track and Field event. The United States of America and Canada refer all the athletics events as track and field events including marathon and race walking.

Brief History of Athletics

The roots of Athletics can be found as deep as  500 BC as they were called Panhellenic Games in Europe. The similar king of games like stone throwing and running were part of the Celtic Festival of Ireland, which used to be organized during 1800 BC. The Egyptian tombs too have paintings of running at the Heb Sed Festival during the 2250 BC. The most modern and the organized athletics were done annually in England, France and then in Greece. The first ever association for athletics was founded in England in 1880 as AAA or the Amateur Athletic Association and the association used to organize the AAA Championships. United States too used to organize the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships during the year of 1876 by the New York Athletic Club. Slowly it gathered momentum and finally the Olympics became the face of athletics in 1896 and since then it has been the most popular event in the Olympics.

The Events in Athletics

  • Track and Field

    • Track
      • Sprints: 60 m, 100 m, 200 m and 400 m
      • Middle distance: 800 m, 1500 m and 3000 m
      • Long distance: 5000 m, 10, 000 m
      • Hurdles: 60 m, 100 m, 110 m, 400 m and 3000 m steeplechase
      • Relays: 4 x 100 m relay and 4 x 400 m relay
    • Field
      • Jumps: Long Jump, Triple Jump, High Jump, Pole Vault
      • Throws: Shot Put, Discus Throw, Hammer Throw, Javelin Throw
    • Combined
      • Pentathlon
      • Heptathlon
      • Decathlon
    • Others
      • Road Running
      • Cross Country
      • Racewalking

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