10 Sports No One Knows Are in the Olympics

10 Sports No One Knows Are in the Olympics


When we think of the Olympics, we often envision iconic events like track and field, swimming, and gymnastics. However, beyond the mainstream sports lie hidden gems—sports that often go unnoticed but are integral parts of the Olympic Games. In this article, we'll explore 10 such sports that may surprise you with their presence in the Olympics.

Sport 1: Trampoline Gymnastics

What is Trampoline Gymnastics?

Trampoline Gymnastics involves performing acrobatic maneuvers on a trampoline. Athletes showcase their skills by executing flips, twists, and somersaults with precision and style.

History and Origins

Trampoline Gymnastics originated in the early 20th century as a form of entertainment and physical training for astronauts and pilots. It gained Olympic recognition in 2000.

Rules and Gameplay

Athletes perform routines consisting of compulsory and optional elements, judged based on difficulty, execution, and artistry.

Sport 2: Racewalking

What is Racewalking?

Racewalking is a long-distance athletic event where participants walk briskly while maintaining contact with the ground and keeping one foot in contact with the ground at all times.

History and Evolution

Racewalking has been part of the Olympic program since 1904. It requires a unique technique to achieve maximum speed while adhering to strict rules to prevent running.

Technique and Rules

Athletes must maintain straight legs and a visible, straight leg upon contact with the ground to avoid disqualification.

Sport 3: Canoe Slalom

What is Canoe Slalom?

Canoe Slalom involves navigating a canoe or kayak through a series of gates on a whitewater course. It requires a combination of speed, agility, and precise maneuvering.

Origins and Development

Canoe Slalom originated in Europe in the early 20th century and became an Olympic sport in 1972. The sport continues to evolve with advancements in equipment and course design.

Course Layout and Scoring

Athletes navigate downstream through gates suspended over the water, with penalties for touching or missing gates. The fastest clean run wins.

Sport 4: Team Handball

What is Team Handball?

Team Handball is a fast-paced indoor sport played between two teams of seven players, with the objective of throwing a ball into the opponent's goal.

History and Spread

Team Handball originated in Europe in the late 19th century and gained popularity worldwide. It became an Olympic sport in 1972 for men and 1976 for women.

Gameplay and Rules

Players pass, dribble, and shoot the ball to score goals, with strict rules governing contact and fouls.

Sport 5: Modern Pentathlon

What is Modern Pentathlon?

Modern Pentathlon is a multi-disciplinary sport consisting of five events: fencing, swimming, equestrian show jumping, pistol shooting, and cross-country running.

History and Tradition

Modern Pentathlon was inspired by the skills required of a 19th-century cavalry soldier. It made its Olympic debut in 1912.

Disciplines and Format

Athletes compete in each event consecutively, with their scores combined to determine the overall winner.

Sport 6: Rhythmic Gymnastics

What is Rhythmic Gymnastics?

Rhythmic Gymnastics combines elements of dance, ballet, and gymnastics, with athletes performing choreographed routines using apparatus such as ribbons, hoops, and balls.

Origins and Evolution

Rhythmic Gymnastics originated in the Soviet Union in the 1940s and gained Olympic recognition in 1984.

Performance and Scoring

Athletes are judged on their technical skills, artistic expression, and apparatus handling, with emphasis on precision and creativity.

Sport 7: Taekwondo

What is Taekwondo?

Taekwondo is a Korean martial art characterized by its emphasis on kicking techniques, with competitions focusing on sparring and forms.

Olympic Recognition

Taekwondo became an official Olympic sport in 2000, showcasing its dynamic kicks and strategic combat.

Rules and Scoring

Athletes score points by landing kicks and punches on designated scoring areas of their opponents' bodies, with additional points awarded for spinning techniques.

Sport 8: Beach Volleyball

What is Beach Volleyball?

Beach Volleyball is a variant of indoor volleyball played on sand courts, featuring teams of two players per side.

Introduction to Olympic Scene

Beach Volleyball made its Olympic debut in 1996, adding a dynamic and visually striking element to the Games.

Gameplay and Strategies

Players must contend with sand conditions and weather elements while employing tactics such as serving, blocking, and setting to outmaneuver opponents.

Sport 9: Table Tennis

What is Table Tennis?

Table Tennis, also known as ping pong, is a fast-paced indoor sport played on a table divided by a net, with players using small paddles to hit a lightweight ball back and forth.

Olympic History

Table Tennis has been part of the Olympics since 1988, showcasing lightning-fast reflexes and precision ball control.

Gameplay and Techniques

Athletes employ a variety of spins, chops, and smashes to outmaneuver opponents and score points, with matches often featuring intense rallies.

Sport 10: Synchronized Swimming

What is Synchronized Swimming?

Synchronized Swimming is a combination of dance, gymnastics, and swimming, with teams or duets performing synchronized routines to music in a pool.

Olympic Inclusion

Synchronized Swimming became an Olympic sport in 1984, captivating audiences with its elegance and precision.

Scoring and Judging

Athletes are evaluated on synchronized movements, artistic impression, and technical execution, with judges awarding scores based on precision, creativity, and difficulty.


The Olympics are a celebration of athleticism and diversity, showcasing a wide array of sports from around the world. While some sports may be more prominent than others, each contributes to the spirit of the Games in its unique way, enriching the experience for athletes and spectators alike.


  1. Are these sports only played in the Olympics? No, while these sports are part of the Olympic program, they are also played at various levels outside of the Games, including regional and international competitions.

  2. How are these lesser-known sports received by audiences? While mainstream sports often attract larger audiences, these lesser-known sports offer unique experiences appreciated by enthusiasts and fans of niche athletics.

  3. Do these sports have professional leagues outside of the Olympics? Some of these sports, such as beach volleyball and table tennis, have established professional circuits and leagues that operate independently of the Olympics.

  4. How can one get involved in practicing these sports? Many communities offer recreational programs and clubs for individuals interested in trying out these sports, providing opportunities for training and competition.

  5. Are there any surprising facts about these sports? Despite their lesser-known status, these sports boast rich histories, remarkable achievements, and passionate communities that continue to uphold their traditions and values.

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