The Olympics has been put on hold due to the COVID crisis. Which has been postponed until July 23, 2021 for the Tokyo Games. However, looking more into the future, the Paris Games of 2024 are looking to be quite the spectacle. As of Monday, the International Olympic Committee has officially declared breakdancing as an Olympic sport. What’s even more incredible is that surfing, sport climbing, and skateboarding have also been added to the Olympics for 2024.
Breakdancing Is An Olympic Sport?
That’s right! If you’ve ever seen a person breakdance before you can tell it’s not exactly easy. There is a certain amount of coordination, exercise, choreography, and so much more that goes into it. However, the sport will be labeled as ‘Breaking’, the original name that hip-hop pioneers called it in the ’70s. Prior to COVID, Paris organizers had already been trying to get breakdancing on the list of potential sports for the Olympics. In 2018, breakdancing/breaking had an overwhelmingly positive influence at the Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires. Which ultimately had even more amazing results in the following year in 2019 by the IOC. The idea is to have a team of 16 athletes that will compete in either the men’s or women’s medal events. (1, 2,)
Paris has even dedicated a huge portion of its downtown venue just for breakdancing. You might be familiar with Place de la Concorde, as it’s the biggest public squares in Paris. This part of downtown is so big that you can find 3-on-3 basketball and sport climbing paired with breakdancing all in the same place. If you’re looking for inspiration, just head to this part of town and watch people work their magic. In fact, Tony Estanguet, the President for 2024, explains why this is so important for their city. (2)
“It’s important for us in our concept to put sports out of the stadiums and in the heart of the city,” Estanguet claims. (2)
Surfing, Skateboarding, And Sport Climbing
In light of breakdancing becoming more official, so are the other three sports they’re aiming to add to the bracket. They also plan on adding skateboarding, surfing, and sport climbing to the list. Paris has a couple of spots in mind for surfing that boast natural waves away from the capital.
“Paris 2024 will choose a venue offering natural waves, as France boasts a number of well-known surfing spots on its Atlantic coast and in its overseas territories,” explains the organizing committee.
They are still trying to decide which spot would be best for competitors. However, they say each one seems to be very, very positive. (2)
Skateboarding is also getting recognition for the Olympics. Organizers recognize the amazing amount of talent and skills one must have to be able to skateboard ‘well’, just like breakdancing. It’s certainly not something you can just pick-up and be a pro the next day. Some people have spent years if not their entire lives dedicated to skateboarding. Skateboarders will have a street and park event to demonstrate their skills. The street portion of the event is just as it sounds. Stairs, rails, and everything you’d find on the streets. Compared to the park setting where it’s an actual man-made skate park for competitors. Giving complicated curves, hills, ramps, and everything you’d find in a skate park. (3)
If you’ve ever watched competitive climbers, you can see why they added this to the Olympics. The sheer amount of strength, endurance, stamina, and patience you have to have as a climber is detrimental. It’s also a matter of how fast you’re able to climb and solve the rocky puzzle to achieve victory. This is quite possibly one of the more intense sports they’re adding to the bracket. (4)
What Got Cut From The Olympics
Even though breakdancing is getting a lot of positive feedback, other sports are not. Unfortunately, there were some cuts that had to be made from the Paris Games of 2024. Boxing and weightlifting had some of the more substantial losses. The amount of athletes has been reduced for these two sports. However, this sport may be dropped entirely due to some concerns from the IOC. This includes concerns of people using drugs to enhance their performance. Not to mention the depth and pace of reform at the International Weightlifting Federation. (1)
Paris wants the 2024 Olympics to provide opportunities for both men and women as they stride for a long-term target of equal participation from everybody. Of course, they are still keeping COVID in mind and trying to plan around what’s currently happening in the world. However, we should be seeing a pretty phenomenal Olympic comeback in 2024. (1)
Breakdancing, surfing, skateboarding, and sport climbing are going to be frequent topics individuals talk about. It’s already getting a lot of people excited for the future to come. Better start getting your team together, because 2024 is going to be the year of change!