Tokyo Olympics: The 6 new sports explained


Adam Ondra is among the many favourites for a gold medal in climbing.

Toru Hanai/Getty Photos

The Tokyo Olympics is just weeks away and this 12 months we’re seeing the lengthy overdue debut of some superior new sports activities that’ll work fantastically for viewing audiences again dwelling.

Climbing is making an extended overdue look, alongside skateboarding. Browsing and karate are additionally alongside for the experience with baseball and softball. 

This is every thing you must know.

New sports activities on the Tokyo Olympics


Fittingly, karate — a martial artwork that originated in Okinawa in the course of the Ryukyu Dynasty — makes its Olympic debut in Tokyo, becoming a member of judo, taekwondo and wrestling. It consists of two disciplines for each women and men: kata (varieties) and kumite (sparring). 

In kata, the athletes exhibit a collection of offensive and defensive actions in opposition to a digital opponent and are evaluated on energy, velocity, rhythm, stability and energy, amongst different issues, utilizing a factors system. 

In kumite, two weight-matched rivals face off in an eight by eight meter space for three minutes. They’re awarded factors after they land strikes, kicks or punches with good type, energy and management on the goal space of their opponent’s physique. The individual with essentially the most factors on the finish of the match or the primary individual to amass an eight-point lead is said the winner. Need to dive deeper into karate? Head to the World Karate Federation’s site for extra.

man skateboarding in an outdoor skate park

Skateboarding will deliver a touch of avenue tradition to the Summer season Olympics. 

Josh Hild/Unsplash


As soon as a sport relegated to the streets of southern California and principally area of interest competitions, skateboarding is making its Olympic debut. Males’s and girls’s Olympic skateboarding will encompass two occasions: park and avenue. The road course is designed to duplicate avenue skating, with stairs, ramps and rails that riders can use to place collectively a collection of tips. Athletes skate individually on three timed runs and are scored on issues like the problem of their tips, velocity, peak and originality. Solely their highest-scoring run is considered for total rankings. 

The park occasion takes place on extra of a bowl-shaped course, within the sense that it appears hollowed out. Riders use the inclines throughout the course to construct momentum and carry out tips. They’re judged on issue and originality, amongst different issues. Learn more about competitive skateboarding.

Sport climbing

woman bouldering

Bouldering partitions are shorter however embrace quite a lot of challenges, like tiny holds and overhangs.

Bhargava Marripati/Unsplash

Within the Olympics, males’s and girls’s sport climbing will encompass three disciplines: velocity climbing, bouldering and lead climbing. In velocity climbing, two athletes safe themselves to ropes and race one another on a hard and fast path to the highest of a 15-meter excessive wall. 

Bouldering includes climbers — with out security ropes — individually making an attempt to ascend as many mounted routes on a Four-meter excessive wall as they’ll inside Four minutes. And in lead climbing, athletes will attempt to climb as excessive as they’ll on a 15-meter excessive wall inside 6 minutes, once more utilizing security ropes. If two folks attain the identical peak, the one who did it quickest wins. 

Though climbers compete in these three occasions individually in world cup competitors, every Olympic athlete should take part in each as a combined occasion, which has brought about controversy within the climbing group. Last rankings will likely be decided by mixed scores. Learn more about sport climbing.


Browsing makes its Olympic debut when ladies and men shortboard rivals hit Japan’s coast. A number of athletes compete at a time, with every warmth lasting 20 to 25 minutes, relying on the standard of the waves. Throughout that point every wave can solely have one rider. As an alternative of being judged on what number of waves they catch, the athletes are judged on the problem of the maneuvers they carry out, with masterful execution on giant waves bringing the best scores. Learn more about competitive surfing.

Sports activities returning to the Tokyo Olympics

Baseball and softball

After being absent from the final two Summer season Olympics, males’s baseball and girls’s softball are returning. As a result of baseball is not wildly standard world wide, solely six nations will compete.

In each sports activities, two groups alternate between batting and fielding when the fielding crew secures three “outs.” Every spherical of hitting and fielding makes up what’s known as an “inning” and every sport consists of 9 innings. The crew with essentially the most runs after 9 innings wins. Tied scores are resolved by additional innings. 

softball on a field

After a two-Video games hiatus, each softball and baseball will likely be again within the Summer season Olympics lineup.


Baseball and softball are each performed in roughly the identical method with just a few variations: Softball is performed with a bigger ball on a small discipline and the pitcher throws underhand from flat floor (not a mound). Softball bats additionally are usually shorter, lighter and smaller in diameter. Learn more about baseball and softball.

Along with the brand new and returning sports activities above, the Worldwide Olympic Committee has additionally given the inexperienced gentle to quite a lot of new occasions inside basketball, swimming, observe and discipline and extra.

The knowledge contained on this article is for instructional and informational functions solely and isn’t meant as well being or medical recommendation. All the time seek the advice of a doctor or different certified well being supplier concerning any questions you will have a few medical situation or well being targets.