5 New Sports in Tokyo Olympics

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be held soon. The biggest multi-sports event in the world will start from July 23 to August 8, 2021. The 32nd edition of the Summer Olympics was actually plan to be held in 2020. However, the event underwent a shift due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Even though it will be held in 2021, the name used will remain the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. A total of 46 sports will be present at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, and five new sports will be competed. The selected new sports are those aimed at attracting the attention of youth and reflecting the urbanization trend of sport. Here are five new sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics:


Karate originated from the island of Okinawa in Japan. There are two karate disciplines that are competed in Tokyo, namely kata and kumite. Kata which means form or model is a single discipline. Competitors (karateka) are judged on a pre-agreed series of offensive and defensive moves. Kumite is a combat discipline that sees karateka face each other in a three-minute bout.

There are three weight classes and they are awarded points for the techniques used. There will be 80 athletes competing in karate in Tokyo 2020. A total of 60 in kumite and 20 in kata will have an equal share between competing men and women.


There are two skateboarding disciplines, street and park. Athletes perform individually and are rated for their performances. Street skateboarding sees athletes face obstacles including rails, stairs, sidewalks, benches, to walls. They will use each part of it to demonstrate skills and tricks during the allotted time limit.

Park skateboarding takes place in a pitch/track with holes. Contestants climb the track, descending at speed to perform aerial tricks accompanied by music. A total of 80 athletes will compete in the sport of skateboarding, with men and women competing in both disciplines.

Rock Climbing

At the Olympics, athletes will compete in three rock climbing disciplines, namely speed climbing, bouldering climbing, and lead climbing. For speed events, two athletes climb a wall as high as 15 meters side by side on the same route. The first athlete to reach the top is the winner. Bouldering is a type of rock climbing in which climbers have to complete a 4.5-meter-high trail without ropes, has complicated routes, large rocky structures, and steep slopes. Then, there is lead climbing which will require athletes to compete quickly in six minutes against a 15 meter high wall.

Assessment in this category is determined by the highest point achieved by the climber with the fastest time. There will be 40 climbers in Tokyo 2020, 20 each in the men’s and women’s events.


The surfing competition will take place at Tsurigasaki Beach, about 100 km from the Tokyo Olympic Stadium. During a 30-minute warm-up, athletes will try to catch as many waves as possible (usually around 10-12). Only the two waves with the highest score count.

If the athlete does not get good waves, five judges will assess the athlete’s performance using a five-point system based on the criteria of difficulty, innovation, speed, strength, and flow. There will be 20 men and 20 women competing in the sport of surfing.


Technically, baseball and softball are not new to the Olympics, but they haven’t been played at the Olympics since Beijing 2008. There will be six teams in each of these sports. Baseball will be played by men and softball is played by women.

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