What Are All the Olympic Sports?

With the Olympics just around the corner, you might be wondering what sports are included in the games. Here’s a comprehensive list of all the Olympic sports, so you can be sure to catch your favorite athletes in action!

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The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will feature 33 sports—a record for an Olympic Games. The 33 sports are: archery, badminton, baseball/softball, basketball, boxing, canoeing, cycling, diving, equestrian, fencing, field hockey, football, golf, gymnastics, handball, judo, karate, modern pentathlon (which includes fencing), rowing, rugby sevens (which is a variant of traditional rugby), sailing, shooting sport (including both clay target and rifle/pistol events), skateboarding (making its Olympic debut), sport climbing (also making its Olympic debut), surfing (also making its Olympic debut), table tennis, taekwondo, tennis (including mixed doubles), triathlon (which includes swimming), volleyball and water polo. The Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee is also considering the addition of baseball/softball and karate as two “additional invitation sports.”

Summer Olympics

The Summer Olympics, also known as the Games of the Olympiad, are a major international multi-sport event normally held every four years. The games are sponsored by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The IOC determines which sports will be in the Olympics through a vote.

Athletics (track and field) has been in every Summer Olympics program since the inaugural edition in 1896. Baseball and softball were removed from the program after the 2008 Summer Olympics; they will return for the 2020 Summer Olympics. Cricket, rowing, lacrosse, polo, rugby union and tug of war were also on the program at one time.

There are currently thirty-five sports contested at the Summer Olympics. These sports are divided into three categories: aquatics (including swimming, diving, synchronized swimming, water polo), athletics (which includes track and field events plus marathon and race walking events), and combat sports (including boxing, fencing, judo, taekwondo, wrestling).

Winter Olympics

The Winter Olympics are a celebration of some of the most popular winter sports from around the world. The most common sports you’ll see are skiing, snowboarding, and ice skating, but there are many more. Here’s a list of all the sports that are played in the Winter Olympics.

Alpine Skiing- This event includes downhill racing, slalom, and giant slalom.

Biathlon- This event is a combination of cross-country skiing and rifle shooting.

Bobsleigh- This event is a team sport where teams of two or four sled down an icy track in a toboggan.

Cross-Country Skiing- This event includes races of various distances over snow-covered terrain.

Curling- This event is a team sport played on ice where players slide stones across the ice towards a target area.

Figure Skating- This event includes singles, pairs, and ice dancing competitions.

Freestyle Skiing- This event includes moguls,aerials, and ski cross racing.

Ice Hockey- This event is a team sport played on an icy surface where two teams try to score goals with a puck.
Luge- This event is an individual or team sport where competitors sled down an icy track on their backs or sides.

Nordic Combined- This event is a combination of ski jumping and cross country skiing.

Short Track Speed Skating- this individual sport takes place on an oval track where athletes compete in various short distances races.

Skeleton- this individual or team sport involves racing down an icy track headfirst on a small sled.

Ski Jumping- this individual sport involves jumping off a ramp with skis on to land as far as possible downhill.

Snowboarding- this individual or team sport includes events such as halfpipe, slope style, and boardercross racing

Speed Skating -this individual sporting events include races over short or long distances on an oval track

How many sports are there in the Olympics?

The Olympics are a international sporting event that occurs every four years. The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be the 64th time the games have been held. The Olympics are comprised of Summer and Winter games, and there are currently (as of the 2020 Tokyo games) 33 sports that are contested in the Summer Olympics, and 23 sports in the Winter Olympics. A quick Google search will tell you that there are currently 206 National Olympic Committees, and each of them is allowed to send athletes to compete in the games.

As far as how many athletes actually compete in the Olympics, that number changes every four years as well, but according toBusiness Insider, over 10,500 athletes competed in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympics. The number of athletes competing in the Winter Olympics is usually much lower — only around 2,900 athletes competed in the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.

So, to answer your question, as of 2020, there are 33 sports in the Summer Olympics and 23 sports in the Winter Olympics.


Archery was one of the sports originally contested at the ancient Olympic Games and it has been part of the modern Olympic program since they were revived in Athens in 1896. It is also one of the few sports that has been contested at both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games.

Archery is open to both men and women and is divided into two main types: recurve and compound. In recurve archery, the ends of the bow curve away from the archer, while in compound archery, the ends of the bow are stiffer and have pulleys that allow for a mechanical advantage, making it easier to draw the bowstring. There are also variations of these two types, such as longbows and barebow (which do not use sights or other aids).

Competition consists of shooting at a target from a set distance; points are awarded for each shot that hits the target. The athletes with the highest point totals after a certain number of rounds (typically either 4 or 6) advance to the next round until only two archers remain, who then compete in a final head-to-head match to determine the gold and silver medalists.


Badminton is a racket sport played using rackets to hit a shuttlecock back and forth across a net. Although it may be played with larger teams, the most common forms of the game are “singles” (with one player per side) and “doubles” (with two players per side). Badminton is often considered a non-contact sport as there is little to no body contact between players.


Baseball is a bat-and-ball sport played between two teams of nine players each. The goal is to score runs by hitting a ball that is thrown by the other team and then running around a series of four bases: first, second, third, and home plate. Players on the batting team take turns hitting against the pitcher of the fielding team, who attempts to stop them from scoring runs by getting hitters out in one of several ways. A player on the batting team who reaches a base safely can later attempt to advance to subsequent bases during teammates’ turns batting, such as on a fly ball that is caught by the outfield or on a ground ball that hits the outfield grass.


Basketball is a popular sport played by both men and women at the Olympic Games. The aim of the game is to score points by shooting a ball through a hoop. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.

Beach volleyball

Beach volleyball is a sport that is played on sand courts. It is similar to indoor volleyball, but there are only two players on each team. The object of the game is to hit the ball over the net and into the other team’s court. The first team to score 21 points wins the game.


Boxing is a combat sport in which two opponents of similar weight fight each other using only their fists. The object of the sport is to score points against your opponent by landing punches on their head or body. A boxing match typically consists of three 3-minute rounds, and the boxer with the most points at the end of the match is declared the winner.

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