How is a sport determined for Olympics inclusion?
- A sport or discipline may be included in the Olympic program if the International Olympic Committee (IOC) determines that it is widely practiced around the world.
- The number of countries that compete in a given sport is the indicator of the sport's prevalence.
- Following this, for the sport to be admitted to the Olympic program, the IOC Session has to approve its inclusion.
Importance of IOC Session
The Session is the general meeting of the members of IOC. It is IOC's supreme organ and its decisions are final.
Number of sports at the Olympics
- In the early 2000s, the IOC decided to cap the number of sports in the Summer Olympics at 28.
- Every edition of the Olympics must include all 25 core sports. These are chosen by the Session upon proposal by the IOC Executive Board.
- Based on this, there will be all 25 core sports and 3 floating sports at the Olympics from 2020.
Host City proposal
- Under the IOC's "Olympic Agenda 2020″ reforms approved in 2014 December, host cities can propose the addition of one or more sports.
- This focuses on adding sports popular in the host country.
- The Olympic Charter decrees that Olympic sports for each edition of the Olympic Games should be decided at an IOC Session no later than seven years prior to the Games.
Baseball and softball dropped after 2008
Baseball and softball were dropped after the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. These were the first sports cut from the Olympics since 1936. The number of sports in 2012 Olympics, therefore dropped from 28 to 26.
Additions to 2016 and 2020 Olympics
- Both Golf and 7s rugby union were approved to be added to the programs of Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
- Wrestling which was dropped from the list of core sports was selected to be included in the Olympic program for 2020 and 2024.
- As per IOC reforms, the host country, Tokyo should come up with a shortlist of eight sports for 2020 games.
Eight sports shortlisted for inclusion in 2020 Olympics
- Out of 26 sports that applied for inclusion in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, eight have been shortlisted by the Tokyo Olympics organisers.
- The eight sports include: bowling, karate, roller sports, climbing, squash, surfing, wushu and the combined bid of baseball and softball.
- The International Olympic Committee will make a final decision in Aug 2016 before Rio Olympics on which sports to be included.