The Olympics are an age old tradition of showcasing your countries finest, most prolific athletes and comparing them to athletes from the rest of the world.
It’s a beautiful tradition that has evolved from the Colosseum in to arenas all over the world. And for the very first time the games will be held in South America. which is awesome. Aside from the fact that it’s being held in a semi-impoverished country, Brazil, who can barely afford to put the games on. The budget for the opening ceremonies was a meager (haha) $55.9 million, which is cheap considering that’s 12 times less than the ceremonies in London and 20 times cheaper than the ones in Beijing. That being said event organizer Fernando Meirelles said he “feels good not to be spending money Brazil hasn’t got”
Country wide backlash erupted in form of protests and marches and even with people attempting (and some succeeding) to extinguish the Olympic torch as it traveled through Brazil, the host city Rio. All because of the money being spent to host the games.
Controversy aside I want to talk about the future of Olympic sport.
This week the IOC confirmed the addition of Skateboarding, Disk/frisby sports and climbing sports into the Olympic realm. Meaning there are plans to have these and more added to the list of events in the 2020 Summer games in Tokyo. Which is amazing. Firstly because it’s recognition of the amazing talents outside of people who don’t participate in “traditional” sports like javelin, archery or track and field events.
It opens the door for other emerging sports like Wing Suit athletes, or other Extreme sports that have begun to capture audiences all over the internet.
Secondly adding these new events it’s a great way to captivate young audiences who don’t necessarily commit to watching the Olympics as they would to watching the X-Games because, the extreme sport realm is so much more appealing to the younger audiences. Possibly this could inspire youth to get into these sports and share the same Olympic dream as say: Usain Bolt or Donavan Bailey or (insert your favourite Olympic athlete here). The future looks bright for the summer Olympic games.
I’m just excited to watch these games, cheer on our Canadian athletes and watch for those golden moments that really capture our hearts and minds.
What events will you be watching this time around ?