Olympic sport or not?

Here at Ladbrokes we know you are all excited about the latest instalment of the Summer Games, so we thought we'd join in the fun and test your Olympic sports knowledge with our latest online game - "Olympic sport or not?". Can you master this quiz, which we made extra hard to properly test your knowledge, or will you fall at the first hurdle? All you need to do is identify which sports have historically been "official" games in each of the ten pairs. Good luck! 

 

If you want an even tougher challenge, why not give our "Historic Olympic Sport or Not" quiz a try next?

 

And if you're still feeling extra sporty after playing, check our sports themed Online Casino games for some more sporting fun. 

 

The History of the Olympic Games

The Origins

The Olympic Games find their roots in Ancient Greece, where they were held as a religious and athletic festival at the sacred site of Olympia. According to Greek mythology, Heracles (the Roman Hercules) and his father Zeus were the original founders of the Games; the legend claims that after Heracles completed his twelve labours, he built the Olympic Stadium in honour of Zeus. The Ancient Greeks believed it was Heracles who first titled the Games ‘Olympics' and established the custom of holding the competition every four years.

The first recorded evidence of the Games dates back to 776 BC, from inscriptions at Olympia listing the winners of a footrace held every four years. However, it is widely believed that the Olympic Games has been going on for many years before this. Athletic competitions between representatives from various city-states and kingdoms within Ancient Greece would be held alongside ritual sacrifices honouring Zeus and Pelops, the divine hero and mythical king of Olympia.

However, as the Romans gained power and influence in Greece, the Games declined in importance. They eventually ceased in the 4th century AD when the new Roman emperors banned the pagan rituals featured in the Games, and ordered the destruction of all Greek temples. It would be another 1,500 years before the Games would be held again.

The Revival

Greeks began to express interest in reviving the Olympic Games after the Greek War of Independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1821. Evangelos Zappas, a wealthy Greek-Romanian philanthropist, sponsored the first modern Olympic Games in 1859 in an Athens city square and funded the restoration of the ancient Panathenaic Stadium.

In 1890, the young French Baron Pierre de Coubertin pioneered the revival by founding the International Olympic Committee (IOC), which would later become the chief governing body of the Olympic Games. His aim was to establish an internationally rotating Olympic Games that would be held by a different host country every four years. The IOC's first Olympic Congress was held in June 1894, at the University of Paris, where it was decided that their first Olympic Games would take place in the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens in 1896.

The Rise

The Games soon began to attract a broad international pool of participants and generate great public interest, and increased in popularity and size over time. The Olympics flourished in their role as an international sporting event; by the VII Paris Games in 1924, they attracted 3,000 athletes from 44 nations, featured a closing ceremony for the first time, and debuted the first Winter Olympics for ice and winter sports. Later, the IOC would introduce the the Paralympic Games for disabled athletes, and the Youth Olympic Games for teenage athletes. 

Today, the Olympic Games are considered to be the world's leading sports competition, with thousands of athletes participating in a variety of competitions from more than 200 nations around the world. To take a trip back to the original world of the Ancient Olympic Games, why not take a whirl on Age of the Gods: King of Olympus