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Tokyo Olympics to usher in new sports including skateboarding, surfing, sport climbing and karate

By on July 21, 2021 0

Four new sports make their Olympic debuts in Tokyo, with two modified versions of established events and a few returning faces also added to the program.

Find out what’s new, what’s different and what’s coming back.

basketball 3×3

Like basketball, but with four fewer players on the court at a time.

The Chinese are the world champions in 3×3, while the United States won the last Men’s World Cup but did not qualify for Tokyo.(

Reuters: Kai Pfaffenbach, file photo

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The sport’s profile was upped by the 2017 Ice Cube Big 3 tournament, which featured a host of former NBA stars.

With obvious roots in pickup basketball, the 3×3 ball is played on a half court and the winner is the first team to 21 or the team that leads after 10 minutes.

The scoring system is also similar to casual basketball, with the traditional three-point line serving as a two-point line, and each bucket marked inside the line is worth one point.

When is it? 3×3 basketball will be the first of all new sports to be featured at this year’s Olympics, with pool rounds starting on Saturday, July 24. The medal matches will take place on Wednesday July 28.

Australians in competition: Australia does not have a men’s or women’s team in Tokyo.

Skateboarding

One of the two “How are you, comrades? »Events added to the Olympic list.

IOC President Thomas Bach explicitly stated that the sport was included because “we can no longer expect that [young people] will automatically come to us; we must go to them “.

A girl is standing smiling with a ticket
Hayley Wilson, who won a silver medal at the X Games in 2019, is one of five Australians competing in skateboarding.(

Provided

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Olympic skateboarding is contested in street and park formats.

  • Street: Competitors ride along a path with rails, boxes, stairs and smaller ramps, performing flip tricks, grinds and slides on a course that looks like the kind of thing you might see in, eh well, a street.
  • To park: Skaters are in a bowl-shaped course with steeper ramps and walls, allowing for more aerial tricks. Think of it like a gymnast’s floor routine with an extra dash of radical.

When is it? The men’s street starts and ends on July 25, with the women cutting the course the next day, the women’s park competition on Wednesday August 4, and the men finishing the course the next day.

Australians in competition: Hayley Wilson (women’s street) and Shane O’Neill (men’s street). Keegan Palmer (men’s playpen), Kieran Woolley (men’s playpen) and Poppy Olsen (women’s playpen).

Surfing

A woman holding a surfboard throws her fist in the air and is encouraged by the people around her.
Australia sends Sally Fitzgibbons (pictured) with Steph GIlmore, Owen Wright and Julian Wilson.(

Instagram: Sally Fitzgibbons

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Australia will have a great chance to win a medal when Tsurigasaki Beach hosts the first Olympic surfing competition in history, as one of the best surfing nations in the world, along with Brazil and the United States. .

Seventeen of the last 22 women’s world championships have been won by Australians, including all seven titles from Tokyo 2020 contender Steph Gilmore, and we’ve won four men’s world titles since 2007, but none since 2013.

The surf will head to more famous waves in 2024, with Parisian organizers sending competitors to the Teahupo’o break in Tahiti.

When is it? The event is supposed to start on Sunday July 25 and end with contests for the gold and bronze medals on Wednesday July 28, but there are four reserve days (July 29-August 1) in case the waves would not like to play ball.

Australians in competition: Sally Fitzgibbons and Steph Gilmore (women), and Julian Wilson and Owen Wright (men).

BMX freestyle

BMX was the IOC’s last apparent attempt to woo X Games audiences when it was introduced for Beijing in 2008.

BMX racing has been a staple since then, but Tokyo will see the introduction of freestyle BMX.

An empty BMX Freestyle course at Ariake Urban Sports Park at the site of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
This is what the BMX freestyle course in Tokyo looks like.(

Getty Images: Ezra Shaw

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Riders will have 60 seconds to do as many awesome tricks as possible on a course such as the arena used for the skateboard park competition, and the judges will give marks based on the difficulty and execution of these tricks.

When is it? The classification rounds take place on Saturday July 31 and the finals the following day.

Australians in competition: Logan Martin (men) and Natalya Diehm (women).

Sport climbing

Slovenian mountaineer Janja Garnbret spreads her arms and legs on the bouldering wall during the IFSC Climbing World Cup.
Slovenian Janja Garnbret is a big favorite for gold.(

Reuters: Jeffrey Swinger / USA TODAY Sports

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As indoor and outdoor climbing gain popularity around the world, the International Olympic Committee has made a commitment to add sport climbing to the program of the Tokyo Olympics.

It’s a combined event, with athletes competing in sprint, lead and block and the person with the best overall exit wins the gold.

  • Speed ​​climbing: Pits competitors against each other on a standardized 15-meter wall used around the world. Whoever reaches the top and stops the clock the fastest gets the points.
  • Climbing in the lead: Done on a 15 meter wall where climbers are roped in and have to hook their rope into each carabiner as they go up. They are measured by their height. If two climbers are tied, the one with the fastest climbers wins.
  • Block: Is done on 4.5 meter walls without rope (rest assured, the reception area is padded). Movements are often fast, powerful and technical, although there will likely be tricky issues with very small or no foot holds. The goal is to complete each block “problem” in as few attempts as possible within the allotted four minutes. There are also “zone” holds on each climb for bonus points.

When is it? It starts on Tuesday August 3 and continues until Friday August 6.

Australians in competition: Tom O’Halloran (men) and Oceana Mackenzie (women).

Karate

Man wearing karate uniform doing a side kick in a dojo
In the kata discipline of karate, athletes simply show their form.(

ABC RN: Mike Williams

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According to the Tokyo 2020 website, karate has been trying to enter the Olympics since the 1970s, but it wasn’t approved until 2015, when the IOC gave it the green light for the Tokyo Games.

Japanese martial art has two competitions contested by men and women: kumite and kata.

  • Kumite: Your Karate Kid style competition, where two karatekas try to fight in a fight.
  • Kata: Demonstration of offensive and defensive karate moves, targeting a virtual opponent.

The IOC and the organizers of Paris 2024 have not made a commitment to do so at the Olympic Games in the future.

When is it? Karate begins on August 5th and the six weight classes (-67kg, -75kg and + 75kg for men; -55kg, -61kg and + 61kg for women) are packed over three days.

Australians in competition: Tsuneari Yahiro (men -75kg).

Baseball and softball

Australian softball pitcher finds himself before delivering a pitch
Perhaps the biggest difference between softball and baseball is the underarm pitch in the first.(

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No you don’t lose it, you might have seen these sports at the Olympics before. They are not strictly speaking new, but they are coming back.

Both were omitted from the London 2012 and Rio 2016 schedules.

Baseball is played only by men, while softball is strictly reserved for women.

When is it? Softball kicked off two days before the Opening Ceremony on Wednesday, July 21, with Australia losing to Japan. The medal matches take place on Tuesday July 27. Baseball begins the next day and continues through Saturday August 7.

Australians in competition: We have a softball team, but no baseball team.


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