The Youth Olympic Games (YOG) is an international multi-sport event for athletes between 15 and 18 years old,[1] organized by the International Olympic Committee. The games are held every four years in staggered summer and winter events consistent with the current Olympic Games format, though in reverse order with the Olympic Winter Games held in leap years instead of the Summer Olympic Games. The first summer version was held in Singapore from 14 to 26 August 2010 while the first winter version was held in Innsbruck, Austria from 13 to 22 January 2012.[2]

The idea of such an event was introduced by Johann Rosenzopf from Austria in 1998. On 6 July 2007, International Olympic Committee (IOC) members at the 119th IOC session in Guatemala City approved the creation of a youth version of the Olympic Games, with the intention of sharing the costs of hosting the event between the IOC and the host city, whereas the travelling costs of athletes and coaches were to be paid by the IOC. These Games will also feature cultural exchange programs and opportunities for participants to meet Olympic athletes.

Several other Olympic events for youth, like the European Youth Olympic Festival held every other year with summer and winter versions, and the Australian Youth Olympic Festival, have proven successful. The Youth Games are modelled after these sporting events.[3] The YOG is also a successor to the discontinued World Youth Games.

The Summer Youth Olympic Games of Singapore in 2010 and Nanjing in 2014 each played host to 3600 athletes and lasted 13 days, whereas the Winter YOG of Innsbruck in 2012 had 1059 athletes and Lillehammer in 2016 had 1100 athletes and lasted 10 days. Even though this exceeded initial estimates,[4][5] the YOG are still both smaller in size as well as shorter than their senior equivalents. The most recent Summer YOG was the 2018 Summer Youth Olympic Games of Buenos Aires. The most recent Winter YOG was the 2020 Winter Youth Olympic Games of Lausanne. The next Summer YOG to take place will be the 2026 Summer Youth Olympics of Dakar, Senegal while the 2024 Winter Youth Olympics will take place in Gangwon, South Korea.

History edit

The concept of the Youth Olympic Games came from Austrian industrial manager Johann Rosenzopf in 1998.[6] This was in response to growing global concerns about childhood obesity and the dropping participation of youth in sport activities, especially amongst youth in developed nations.[7] It was further recognized that a youth version of the Olympic Games would help foster participations in the Olympic Games.[8] Despite these reasons for having an Olympic event for young people, the IOC's response of holding a purely sporting event was negative.[9] IOC delegates wanted the event to be as much about cultural education and exchange as it was about sports, which is why the Culture and Education Program (CEP) was developed as a component of each celebration of the Games.[9] Jacques Rogge, IOC President, formally announced plans for the Youth Olympic Games at the 119th IOC session in Guatemala City on 6 July 2007.[10] There are several goals for the YOG, and four of them include bringing together the world's best young athletes, offering an introduction into Olympism, innovating in educating and debating Olympic values.[11] The city of Singapore was announced as the host of the inaugural Summer Youth Olympics on 21 February 2008.[12] On 12 December 2008 the IOC announced that Innsbruck, host of the 1964 and 1976 Winter Olympics, would be the host of the inaugural Winter Youth Olympics in 2012.[13]

Requirements of host cities edit

The scale of the Youth Olympic Games is smaller than that of the Olympics, which is intentional and allows for smaller cities to host an Olympic event. Potential host cities are required to keep all events within the same city and no new sports venues should be built.[11] Exceptions to this building moratorium include a media centre, amphitheatre facilities for classes and workshops, and a village for coaches and athletes.[11] This village is to be the heart of the Games for the athletes, and the hub of activity.[11] No new or unique transportation systems are required as all athletes and coaches will be transported by shuttles.[11] According to bid procedures, the track and field stadium for the opening and closing ceremonies must hold 10,000 people, and a city must have a 2,500-seat aquatics facility (for Summer editions).[14]

Financing edit

The first logo of Youth Olympic Games
The second logo of Youth Olympic Games
The third logo of Youth Olympic Games

The original estimated costs for running the Games were US$30 million for the Summer and $15 million to $20 million for Winter Games (these costs did not include infrastructure improvements for venue construction). The IOC has stipulated that costs for infrastructure and venues is to be paid by the host city.[15] The IOC will pay travel costs to the host city and room and board for the athletes and judges, estimated at $11 million. The funding will come from IOC funds and not revenues. The budgets for the final two bids for the inaugural Summer Games as submitted by the IOC came in at $90 million, much higher than the estimated costs.[16] The cost of the first games in Singapore escalated to an estimated S$387 million ($284 million).[17][18] Sponsors have been slow to sign on for the YOG, due to the fact that it is a new initiative and corporations are not sure what level of exposure they will get.[16] The budget for the inaugural Winter Games to be held in Innsbruck has been estimated at $22.5 million, which does not include infrastructure improvements and venue construction.[19]

Participation edit

Over 200 countries and 3,600 athletes participated in the inaugural 2010 Youth Summer Olympics.[20] Participants are placed in the following age groups: 15–16 years, 16–17 years, and 17–18 years.[21] The athlete's age is determined by how old they are by 31 December of the year they are participating in the YOG.[11] Qualification to participate in the Youth Olympics is determined by the IOC in conjunction with the International Sport Federations (ISF) for the various sports on the program.[11] To ensure that all nations are represented at the YOG the IOC instituted the concept of Universality Places. A certain number of spots in each event are to be left open for athletes from under-represented nations regardless of qualifying marks. This is to ensure that every nation will be able to send at least four athletes to each Youth Olympic Games.[11] For team tournaments one team per continent will be allowed to compete along with a sixth team either representing the host nation or as proposed by the IF with IOC approval. There is a cap of two teams (one boys' and one girls') per nation.[11] Finally, no nation may enter more than 70 athletes in individual sports.[11]

Sports edit

Summer edit

Unlike the traditional Games, it is up to the Organizing Committee to choose which disciplines will be chosen to be played in collective sports.Twenty-seven sports were introduced in the 2010 Games. The Organizing Committee for the 2014 Games, chose beach volleyball (replacing their indoor counterpart) and field hockey as optional sport. In the 2018 Games, six sports were introduced: beach handball (replacing their indoor counterpart), breakdancing, futsal (replacing their association counterpart), karate, roller speed skating and sport climbing. The 28 Olympic core sports are expected to feature in the 2026 Games, being confirmed in 2020.[22] In July 2020, it was agreed by both host nation Senegal and the International Olympic Committee that the 2022 Summer Youth Olympics would not be held and would instead be pushed back to 2026.[23]

Sport Years
Archery All
Athletics All
Badminton All
Baseball 2026
Basketball All
Beach handball Since 2018
Beach volleyball Since 2014
Boxing All
Breakdancing Since 2018
Canoeing All
Cycling All
Diving All
Equestrian All
Fencing All
Field hockey All
Football 2010–2014
Futsal Since 2018
Golf Since 2014
Gymnastics All
Handball 2010–2014
Sport Years
Judo All
Karate Since 2018
Modern pentathlon All
Roller speed skating 2018
Rowing All
Rugby sevens Since 2014
Sailing All
Shooting All
Skateboarding 2026
Sport climbing Since 2018
Surfing 2026
Swimming All
Table tennis All
Taekwondo All
Tennis All
Triathlon All
Volleyball 2010
Weightlifting All
Wrestling All
Wushu 2026 [24]

Winter edit

There have been 46 disciplines across 16 sports in the Winter Youth Olympics between the 2012 Games to the 2020 Games. In the 2012 Games at Innsbruck and the 2016 Games at Lillehammer,all 15 compulsory winter sports had events held.In the next Games, the 2020 Games at Lausanne, a optional sport, ski mountaineering, was added.

Sport Years
Alpine skiing All
Biathlon All
Bobsleigh All
Cross-country skiing All
Curling All
Figure skating All
Freestyle skiing All
Ice hockey All
Sport Years
Luge All
Nordic combined All
Short track speed skating All
Skeleton All
Ski jumping All
Ski mountaineering Only 2020
Snowboarding All
Speed skating All

Culture and education edit

Flags of participating nations at the 2010 Summer Youth Olympics

Education and culture are also key components for the Youth edition. Not only does the education/culture aspect apply to athletes and participants, but also youth around the world and inhabitants of the host city and surrounding regions. To this end, a Culture and Education Program (CEP) will be featured at each Games.[8] The first CEP at the 2010 Singapore Games featured events that fostered cooperation amongst athletes of different nations. It had classes on topics ranging from health and fitness to the environment and career planning. Local students from Singapore made booths at the World Culture Village that represented each of the 205 participating National Olympic Committee.[25] The Chat with Champions sessions were the most popular portion of the program.[8] Participants were invited to hear inspirational talks given by former and current Olympic athletes.[8]

Also part of the CEP is the Young Ambassadors Programme, Young Reporters Programme and Athlete Role Models.[26] Under the Young Ambassadors Programme, a group of youths aged 18 to 25 years old are nominated by the NOCs to help promote the YOG in their regions and communities, and encourage the athletes to participate in the CEP programmes.

The Young Reporters Programme[27] provides journalism students or those who have recently started their journalism careers a cross-platform journalist-training programme and on-the-job experience during the YOG. Young Reporters, between the ages of 18 and 24, are selected by the Continental Associations of National Olympic Committees and will represent each of the five continents.

Acting as mentors to help support and advise young Olympians are the Athlete Role Models, who are typically active or recently retired Olympians nominated by the IFs, such as Japanese wrestler Kaori Icho,[28] Italian Simone Farina[29] and Namibian Frank Fredericks.[30]

Emphasis on exchange goes beyond the CEP. Another unique feature of the Youth Olympic Games is mixed-gender and mixed-national teams. Triathlon relays, fencing, table tennis, archery and mixed swimming relays are a few of the sports in which athletes from different nations and mixed genders can compete together.[8] YOG organizers are also using social media such as Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter as key platforms for engaging young athletes before, during, and after each celebration of the Games.[8] Multi-lingual, multi-cultural, and multi-age requirements are the targets of the program, which stress the themes of "Learning to know, learning to be, learning to do, and learning to live together".[25]

List of Youth Olympic Games edit

In early November 2007, Athens, Bangkok, Singapore, Moscow, and Turin were selected by the IOC as the five candidate cities to host the inaugural Youth Olympic Games.[31] In January 2008, the candidates were further pared down to just Moscow and Singapore. Finally, on 21 February 2008, Singapore was declared host of the inaugural Youth Olympic Games 2010 via live telecast from Lausanne, Switzerland, winning by a tally of 53 votes to 44 for Moscow.[32]

On 2 September 2008 IOC announced that the executive board had shortlisted four cities among the candidates to host the first Winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012. The four candidate cities were Harbin, Innsbruck, Kuopio, and Lillehammer.[33] IOC president Jacques Rogge appointed Pernilla Wiberg to chair the commission which analysed the projects. As with the Summer Games, the list was then shortened to two finalists, Innsbruck and Kuopio, in November 2008. On 12 December 2008, it was announced that Innsbruck beat Kuopio to host the games.[33] Nanjing, China was selected by the IOC over Poznan, Poland to be the host-city of the 2014 Youth Olympics. The election was held on 10 February 2010, two days before the start of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.[34] Lillehammer, Norway hosted the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics.[35]

Summer Youth Olympic Games edit

Edition Year Host City Host Nation Opened by Start Date End Date Nations Competitors Sports Events Top of the medal table Ref.
I 2010 Singapore   Singapore President S. R. Nathan 14 August 26 August 204 3,524 26 201   China (CHN) [36]
II 2014 Nanjing   China President Xi Jinping 16 August 28 August 203 3,579 28 222   China (CHN) [37]
III 2018 Buenos Aires   Argentina President Mauricio Macri 6 October 18 October 206 3,997 32 239   Russia (RUS) [38]
IV 2026[a] Dakar   Senegal 31 October 13 November Future event 35 244 Future event [39]
V 2030 TBD TBD Future event Future event
VI 2034 TBD TBD Future event Future event
Host cities of the Summer Youth Olympic Games

Winter Youth Olympic Games edit

Edition Year Host City Host Nation Opened by Start Date End Date Nations Competitors Sports Events Top of the medal table Ref.
I 2012 Innsbruck   Austria President Heinz Fischer 13 January 22 January 69 1,059 7 63   Germany (GER) [40]
II 2016 Lillehammer   Norway King Harald V 12 February 21 February 71 1,100 7 70   United States (USA) [41]
III 2020 Lausanne    Switzerland President Simonetta Sommaruga 9 January 22 January 79 1,872 8 81   Russia (RUS) [42]
IV 2024 Gangwon   South Korea 19 January 1 February Future event Future event
V 2028 TBD TBD Future event Future event
VI 2032 TBD TBD Future event Future event
Host cities of the Winter Youth Olympic Games

Medal count edit

1  China (CHN)995038187
2  Russia (RUS)967458228
  Mixed-NOCs (MIX)484652146
3  Japan (JPN)434230115
4  South Korea (KOR)37232181
5  United States (USA)34313196
6  Germany (GER)294242113
7  Italy (ITA)28343496
8  France (FRA)25283689
9  Hungary (HUN)24202266
10  Ukraine (UKR)22253077
Totals (127 entries)8828729382692

See also edit

Notes edit

  1. ^ The games were originally scheduled for 2022; however, they were postponed to 2026 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

References edit

  1. ^ "No kidding: Teens to get Youth Olympic Games". USA Today. 25 April 2007. Retrieved 19 May 2007.
  2. ^ "FIS in favor of Youth Olympic Games". FIS. 8 May 2007. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 20 May 2007.
  3. ^ "Rogge wants Youth Olympic Games". BBC Sport. 19 March 2007. Retrieved 19 May 2007.
  4. ^ "IOC to Introduce Youth Olympic Games in 2010". 25 April 2007. Archived from the original on 9 August 2016. Retrieved 20 May 2007.
  5. ^ "1st Summer Youth Olympic Games in 2010" (PDF). International Olympic Committee Department of Communications. 2007. p. 8. Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 November 2007. Retrieved 24 August 2007.
  6. ^ "Olympischer Frieden". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. 27 December 2010. Retrieved 4 February 2011.
  7. ^ "Youth Olympic Games" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. p. 28. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  8. ^ a b c d e f Stoneman, Michael. "Welcome to the Family". International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  9. ^ a b "Youth Olympic Games" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. p. 35. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  10. ^ "IOC Session: A "go" for Youth Olympic Games". International Olympic Committee. 5 July 2007. Retrieved 5 July 2007.
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Factsheet Youth Olympic Games" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. February 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 March 2012. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  12. ^ Wang, Jeanette. "Perfect Pitch" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  13. ^ "Innsbruck Elected To Host the Inaugural Youth Olympic Winter Games In 2012". 12 December 2008. Archived from the original on 28 December 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  14. ^ "2018 Youth Olympic Games: Appraising Abuja's Bid Plan". 19 March 2011. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  15. ^ "Youth Olympic Games Candidature Procedure and Questionnaire" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. p. 52. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2011. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  16. ^ a b Leyl, Sharanjit (15 August 2010). "Youth Olympic Games gamble for Singapore". BBC. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  17. ^ "Cost of Youth Games goes up three-fold An extra $265 million". Comsenz Inc. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  18. ^ "Youth Olympic Games to cost $387 million". Singapore Democrats. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  19. ^ "1st Winter Youth Olympic Games in 2012" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. pp. 12–14. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 October 2012. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  20. ^ "About Us". Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games. Archived from the original on 25 May 2012. Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  21. ^ "Youth Olympic Games". International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 19 May 2011.
  22. ^ International Olympic Committee. "Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2026 - Sports and Events Programme" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 December 2019. Retrieved 6 December 2019.
  23. ^ "Senegal and the IOC agree to postpone the Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022 to 2026". 15 July 2020. Retrieved 21 February 2022.
  24. ^ "Baseball5 and wushu added to Youth Olympic Games programme at Dakar 2022". 8 January 2020.
  25. ^ a b "Youth Olympic Games" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. p. 42. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 August 2010. Retrieved 20 May 2011.
  26. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 August 2010. Retrieved 17 August 2010.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  27. ^ "IOC announces the Young Reporters for the Youth Olympic Games". Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  28. ^ "Three-time Olympic champion and Athlete Role Model Kaori Icho on her love for wrestling". Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  29. ^ "Farina appointed to Youth Olympic Games role". Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  30. ^ "Meet Frank Fredericks, Athlete Role Model for Innsbruck 2012!". Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  31. ^ "Teenage Kicks: The Inaugural Youth Olympic Games". SportsPro. Retrieved 12 July 2011.
  32. ^ "Factsheet Youth Olympic Games" (PDF). International Olympic Committee. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 March 2012. Retrieved 12 July 2011.
  33. ^ a b "Innsbruck Elected To Host the Inaugural Youth Olympic Winter Games In 2012". Archived from the original on 6 January 2012. Retrieved 12 July 2011.
  34. ^ "Nanjing, China Elected To Host 2014 Summer Youth Olympic Games". Archived from the original on 10 August 2011. Retrieved 12 July 2011.
  35. ^ "Lillehammer awarded 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games". 7 December 2011. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  36. ^ "1st YOG Singapore 2010". IOC. Retrieved 14 August 2010.
  37. ^ "2nd YOG Nanjing 2014". IOC. Retrieved 16 August 2014.
  38. ^ "3rd YOG Buenos Aires 2018". IOC. Retrieved 4 July 2013.
  39. ^ "4th YOG Dakar 2022". IOC. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  40. ^ "1st WYOG Innsbruck 2012". IOC. Retrieved 13 January 2012.
  41. ^ "2nd WYOG Lillehammer 2016". IOC. Retrieved 12 February 2016.
  42. ^ "3rd WYOG Lausanne 2020". IOC. Retrieved 31 July 2015.

External links edit