By D. Westphalen
Athletics is a series of sporting events which involve running, jumping, throwing and other activities. Most of the sports are called, ‘Track & Field’, meaning they can either be completed on the track, most races, or on a field, like a javelin throw or high jump competition. Most of the activities are individual, except for the relay. In most competitions, the athletes represent a team, such as their school, university, country, etc. Athletics is considered one of the most important sports in the Olympics.
Athletics dates way back to the Ancient Olympic Games in Greece, and it was very important at that time. Athletics is one of the oldest sports, being first competed in 776 BC. The famous Greek sculpture of Discobulus, portrays a young man about to throw a disc, participating in a discus throw competition, which to this day still is an Olympic sport. Also, the myth of Perseus and Acrisius shows how athletics were a big part of Ancient Greece, because, in the myth, Perseus kills Acrisius in a discus throw competition, by missing and hitting him in the head.
Athletics has also been a very important part of the Modern Olympics, as the sport was competed in every single edition, all the way from 1896 in Athens, to 2016 in Rio. There are currently 27 athletic events in the Olympics, some of the most famous being, 100 meters run, 4x100 relay, high jump, long jump, javelin throw and decathlon.
Some famous world records are: