Athletics is often used as a synonym for any sporting activity, but in reality, athletics refers mainly to a series of disciplines and track and field events that involve running, jumping or throwing.

These sporting events are held at the junior, secondary, university and professional levels throughout the year throughout the world. And they are closely related to the Olympic Games.

But how and when does athletics arise? When were these disciplines born? And something very interesting … When did the modern Olympic games appear? We will answer all these questions.

The origin and history of athletics

Athletics is the oldest set of sports events, its beginnings date back thousands of years, starting in an organized form around 776 BC, in the first celebration of the Olympic Games in Greece.

At this time the main event was the pentathlon, which included disciplines such as javelin and discus throw, wrestling, long jump and cross-country race.

Over the years, other disciplines such as the armored race were integrated.

The Romans, after conquering Greece in the year 146 BC, adopted and continued to celebrate this “sports ritual” until in 394 AD the Emperor Theodosius abolished the Olympic Games.

In this way eight centuries passed until in the 19th century in Great Britain brought these sports practices back to life. They quickly gained adherents and became the favorite sport of the English. They even started competitions between universities.

Already in the year 1868, the Athletics had gotten into the USA. when the first amateur competition was organized on the indoor track. A few years later he moved to Latin America and the rest of Europe reaching more and more people.

The resurgence of the olympic games

In the year 1896 in Athens, Greece; an event occurs that would mark a before and after in athletics. The Olympic Games begin, with some modifications with respect to those initiated in Olympia by the Greeks.

In this way the Olympic Games have been developed in different countries every 4 years almost uninterrupted, I say almost because in the years where the first and second world war was maintained for obvious reasons this competition was not carried out.

In 1913 the IAAF was created in London, the body that regulates athletics competitions on an international scale, and this is in charge of establishing rules and regulations, giving officiality to the records made by athletes in all types of competitions.

The growth of athletics in the 20th century

After the 1896 Olympic Games, the popularity of athletics, or rather the revival of athletic competition, took place all over the world.

For many years, the pinnacle of athletics competition was the European Summer Olympic Games.

But in the 1970s, other disciplines began to take place, helping to maintain the interest of athletics year after year without waiting for the 4 years of the games.

Organization of athletics in the 21st century

By 2011, almost 50 outdoor events and 25 indoor events fall under the authority and rules of the IAAF.

Some events, such as the 50-meter sprint, are no longer part of the main athletic competitions but are still part of school programs.

Some events have changed over the years. There are competitions of men and women in almost all events. Men, however, can compete in the decathlon of 10 events, while women have the heptathlon of seven events.

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