Tokyo Olympics 2020 | What are the new sports this year and what’s been dropped?

This year, six new games will make their bow at Tokyo. Want to know which ones? Here we go:


With its origins in Okinawa, Japan, it seems befitting that this ancient martial art makes its Olympic debut in Tokyo. There are two disciplines — kata (forms) and kumite (sparring). In the former, athletes demonstrate a series of offensive and defensive movements against a virtual opponent. They are judged on factors such as strength, speed, balance, and power, to name a few and are awarded points. In the latter, two competitors of equal weight come face-to-face for three minutes. When they land kicks, punches, or strikes in good form, displaying power and control over their opponent, they are awarded points.


This wonderful water sport makes its big-stage debut, where multiple athletes compete, with each round lasting 20 to 25 minutes. However, each wave can only have one rider. Instead of being judged on how many waves they land, athletes will be judged on the complexity of their manoeuvres, and how well they handle large waves. The larger the waves they ride, the higher their scores.


This will also have two events — park and street. While the first will have a hollowed-out course and inclines for participants to show off their tricks, the latter will have rails, ramps and stairs. Participant will be judged on speed, difficulty and originality in both.

Sport climbing

Sport or rock climbing joins the elite league with three disciplines — bouldering, speed climbing, and lead climbing. In Speed climbing, two climbers with safety ropes will race each other to the top of a 15-metre wall,. Bouldering takes place on a four-metre wall and participants have to scale as many routes as possible in four minutes. In lead climbing, the participant has to climb a wall that is more than 15 metres high, within six minutes, using safety ropes while he/she remains anchored to the wall. In these two, climbers are not allowed to practise before competing and have only a few minutes to study the routes and decide their strategy.

Returning sports

Softball and baseball

Baseball and softball will be conducted in a modified tournament format by the The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC), the international governing body, which was set up in 2013 for the merger of the International Softball Federation and the International Baseball Federation. Despite baseball’s humongous global following, it has made only intermittent appearances at the Olympics. It received Olympic sport status at the 1992 Barcelona Games but was dropped in 2008. Softball, which made its appearance at the 1996 Atlanta Games was also dropped in 2008.

Left out

Since the first modern games in 1896, there are some sports that have been dropped from the Olympic schedule:

  • Cricket, Croquet, and Pelota - Introduced in 1900, they featured only this edition of the Games.
  • Polo - It was introduced in 1900 and dropped after the 1936 Olympics. In 1996, the International Olympic Committee voted to classify it as a recognised sport, and it was accepted as a demonstration sport in the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics.
  • Jeu de Paume and Motor boating - Introduced and played only in 1908, after which they were dropped.
  • Roque and Tug-of-war - Introduced in 1904 and dropped after.
  • Lacrosse - It was introduced in 1904 and was dropped after the 1908 Olympics.
  • Motor boating - Introduced in 1908 and dropped after.

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Printable version | Sep 26, 2021 7:03:50 AM |

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