A multi-sport event is an organized sporting event, often held over multiple days, featuring competition in many different sports among organized teams of athletes from (mostly) nation-states. The first major, modern, multi-sport event of international significance is the modern Olympic Games.
Many regional multi-sport events have since been founded on and modeled after the Olympics. Most have the same basic structure. Games are held over the course of several days in and around a "host city", which changes for each competition. Countries send national teams to each competition, consisting of individual athletes and teams that compete in a wide variety of sports. Athletes or teams are awarded gold, silver or bronze medals for first, second and third place respectively. The games are generally held every four years, though some are annual competitions.
The Ancient Olympic Games, first held in 776 BC, was the precursor to the Modern Olympic Games, although its first edition only featured a footrace and the number of sporting competitions expanded at later editions.
There were several other "games" held in Europe in the classical era:
Other multi-sport festivals emerged in the Middle Ages in Europe, including the Cotswold Olimpick Games in England in the 1600s, the Highland Games in Scotland, and the Olympiade de la République in France in the 1800s.
In the late 19th and early 20th century, athletes at multi-sport events were almost exclusively male. As international women's sport began to develop, events such as the Women's World Games and Olympics of Grace were held to allow women to engage in sport on the international stage. Though short-lived, events such as these led to greater inclusion of women at multi-sport events over the course of the 20th century.
Since the establishment of the Olympics, most serial multi-sport events have been organized for specific audiences and participating countries or communities. These affiliations include:
The first modern multi-sport event organised were the Olympic Games, organised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) (est. 1894) for the first time in 1896 in Athens, Greece. After some celebrations (1900, 1904), the Olympics became very popular nowadays. The number of sports, initially only a few, is still growing.
The Paralympic Games is the largest multi-sport event involving athletes with physical disabilities and is organized by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC). Arranged for the first time in 1960 in Rome, Italy. The number of sports, initially only a few, is still growing.
The first Special Olympics International Summer Games were held in Chicago, Ill., in 1968. The most recent Special Olympics World Winter Games in Schladming, Austria involved 25 sports and approximately 2,277 athletes from 133 countries.
At the beginning of the 20th century, another multi-sport event, the Nordic Games were first held. These Games were held in Scandinavia, and the sports conducted were winter sports such as cross-country skiing and speed skating. The Nordic Games were last held in 1926, after which the 1924 Winter Sports Week in Chamonix was declared the first Olympic Winter Games.
In the 1920s, all kinds of other multi-sport events were set up. These were usually directed for a selected group of athletes, rather than everybody, which was basically the case with the Olympic Games. The Soviets organized the first Spartakiad in 1920, a communist alternative to the 'bourgeois' Olympic Games, and in 1922 the University Olympia was organizedor in Italy, the forerunner of the World University Games, meant for students only.
Regional games were another kind of multi-sport event that was established, such as the Far Eastern Championship Games (1913), the Central American and Caribbean Games (1926) or the Pan American Games (1951).
The Olympic Games are still the largest multi-sport event in the world in terms of worldwide interest and importance (though no longer in participation), but several others also have significance.
Other Games are intended for handicapped or disabled athletes. The International Silent Games, first held in Paris in 1924, were the first Games for deaf athletes. The Stoke Mandeville Wheelchair Games, K incepted in 1948 in England, were the first Games for wheelchair athletes. In 1960, the first Paralympic Games were held, connected with the Olympic Games. The Special Olympics World Games, for athletes with intellectual disabilities, were first held in 1968.
The 1912 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the V Olympiad, were an international multi-sport event held in Stockholm, Sweden, between 5 May and 27 July 1912. Twenty-eight nations and 2,408 competitors, including 48 women, competed in 102 events in 14 sports.1958 Asian Games
The 1958 Asian Games, officially the Third Asian Games (Japanese: 第3回アジア競技大会) and commonly known as Tokyo 1958, was a multi-sport event held in Tokyo, Japan, from 24 May to 1 June 1958. It was governed by the Asian Games Federation. A total of 1,820 athletes representing 20 Asian National Olympic Committees (NOCs) participated in the Games. The program featured competitions in 13 different sports encompassing 97 events, including four non-Olympic sports, judo, table tennis, tennis and volleyball. Four of these competition sports – field hockey, table tennis, tennis and volleyball – were introduced for the first time in the Asian Games.
This is the first time that Japan hosted the Asian Games.1984 Summer Olympics medal table
The 1984 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XXIII Olympiad, were an international multi-sport event held in Los Angeles, California, United States, from 28 July to 12 August 1984. These Games had 6,829 athletes from 140 NOCs participating in a total of 221 events in 23 sports. The United States topped the medal count for the first time since 1968, winning a record 83 gold medals and surpassing the Soviet Union’s total of 80 golds at the 1980 Summer Olympics. Athletes from 47 NOCs won medals, of which 25 secured a gold medal.2009 South American Beach Games
The I Beach South American Games was a multi-sport event held from 2 to 13 December 2009 in Montevideo and Punta del Este, Uruguay. The Games was organized by the South American Sports Organization (ODESUR).2010 South American Games
The IX South American Games (Spanish: Juegos Sudamericanos; Portuguese: Jogos Sul-Americanos) was a multi-sport event held between 19–30 March 2010 in Medellín, Colombia. The Games were organized by the South American Sports Organization (ODESUR), who awarded the Games to the city with 8 votes over the bid by previous host Santiago, Chile (6 votes).2018 European Championships
The 2018 European Championships were the first edition of the European Championships. It was a multi-sport event which took place in Berlin, Germany, and Glasgow, United Kingdom (with Edinburgh hosting the diving events and Gleneagles the golf) from 2 to 12 August 2018. Around 1,500 athletes competed at the European Athletics Championships in Berlin, whilst at the same time more than 3,000 took part in the other championships in Glasgow. Each European Championship will be organised by the respective federation and host city.African Games
The African Games, formally known as the All-Africa Games or the Pan African Games, are a continental multi-sport event held every four years, organized by the African Union (AU) with the Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA) and the Association of African Sports Confederations (AASC).
All of the competing nations are from the African continent. The first Games were held in 1965 in Brazzaville, Congo. The International Olympic Committee granted official recognition as a continental multi-sport event, along with the Asian Games and Pan American Games. Since 1999, the Games have also included athletes with a disability.The Supreme Council for Sport in Africa (SCSA) was the organisation body for the game. On 26 July 2013, the Extraordinary Assembly of the Supreme Council for Sports held in Abidjan, Ivory Coast that was held on the sidelines of the 5th Session of the African Union Conference of Sports Ministers that started on 22 July 2013 recommended the dissolution of the Supreme Council for Sport in Africa and to also transfer all functions, assets & liabilities of SCSA to the African Union Commission. The organization of the African Games is now managed by three parts, the AU (the owners of the game), the ANOCA (occupying the technical aspects) and the AASC (developing marketing policy, sponsorship and research resources).
After running previous 11 editions as the All-Africa Games, the games has been renamed the African Games. The decision for the name change was arrived at, during the Executive Council meeting of the African Union held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in January 2012.Asian Games
The Asian Games, also known as Asiad, is a continental multi-sport event held every four years among athletes from all over Asia. The Games were regulated by the Asian Games Federation (AGF) from the first Games in New Delhi, India, until the 1978 Games. Since the 1982 Games, they have been organized by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), after the breakup of the Asian Games Federation. The Games are recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and are described as the second largest multi-sport event after the Olympic Games.In its history, nine nations have hosted the Asian Games. Forty-six nations have participated in the Games, including Israel, which was excluded from the Games after their last participation in 1974.
The most recent games was held in Jakarta and Palembang, Indonesia from 18 August to 2 September 2018. The next games are scheduled to Hangzhou, China between 10 and 25 September 2022. Since 2010, host cities are contracted to manage both the Asian Games and the Asian Para Games, in which athletes with physical disabilities compete with one another. The Asian Para Games are held immediately following the Asian Games.Asian Martial Arts Games
The Asian Martial Arts Games, also known as AMG, is a Pancontinental multi-sport event held every four years among athletes from all over Asia, after the merger of the Asian Indoor Games and the Asian Martial Arts Games. The Games have been organized by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA). The Games are described as the second largest multi-sport event after the Asian Games.
In its history, one nations have hosted the Asian Martial Arts Games. Thirty-seven nations from Asia have participated in the Games.The last Games was held in Bangkok, Thailand from 1 August to 9 August 2009.Asian Para Games
The Asian Para Games is a multi-sport event regulated by the Asian Paralympic Committee that held every four years after every Asian Games for athletes with physical disabilities. Both the former and the latter had adopted the strategy used by the Olympic and Paralympic Games of having both games in the same city. The Games are recognized by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and are described as the second largest multi-sport event after the Paralympic Games.
In its history, three nations have hosted the Asian Para Games and Forty-four nations have participated in the Games.
The most recent games was held in Jakarta, Indonesia from 6 to 13 October 2018. The next games are scheduled to Hangzhou, China.Asian Youth Games
The Asian Youth Games, also known as AYG, is a multi-sport event held every four years among athletes from all over Asia. The Games have been organized by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA). The Games are described as the second largest multi-sport event after the Asian Games.
In its history, three nations have hosted the Asian Youth Games. Forty-five nations have participated in the Games.
The last Games was held in Nanjing, China from 16 to 24 August 2013, while the next games will be postponed until 2021 in Shantou, China.Commonwealth Winter Games
The Commonwealth Winter Games was a multi-sport event comprising winter sports, last held in 1966. Three editions of the Games have been staged. The Winter Games were designed as a counterbalance to the Commonwealth Games, which focuses on summer sports, to accompany the Winter Olympics and Summer Olympic Games.European Championships (multi-sport event)
The European Championships is a multi-sport event which brings together the existing European Championships of some of the continent's leading sports every four years. The inaugural edition in 2018 was staged by the host cities of Berlin, Germany and Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom between 2 and 12 August. European Championships in these sports held outside this quadrennial framework (annually in the cases of cycling, gymnastics, rowing and triathlon; biennially in the cases of athletics and aquatics) are unaffected.European Games
The European Games is an international multi-sport event in the Olympic tradition contested by athletes from European nations. The Games were envisioned and are to be governed by the European Olympic Committees (EOC), which announced their launch at its 41st General Assembly in Rome, on 8 December 2012. The 2015 European Games, the first edition of the event, took place in Baku, Azerbaijan in June 2015, and further editions are planned every four years thereafter. The 2019 edition is scheduled for Minsk, Belarus from 21-30 June.
The European Games are the 5th continental Games in the Olympic tradition to be initiated, after the Asian Games, Pan American Games, Pacific Games and African Games. As of 2015, every continent has a continental games.The European Games are not related to the European Championships, a separate multi-sport event organised by individual European sports federations, bringing together the individual European Championships of Athletics, Swimming, Artistic Gymnastics, Cycling, Rowing, Golf and Triathlon under a single 'brand' on a four-yearly cycle beginning in 2018, and broadcast by agreement with the EBU.Invictus Games
The Invictus Games is an international adaptive multi-sport event, created by Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, in which wounded, injured or sick armed services personnel and their associated veterans take part in sports including wheelchair basketball, sitting volleyball, and indoor rowing. Named after Invictus, Latin for "unconquered" or "undefeated", the event was inspired by the Warrior Games, a similar event held in the United States.
The first Invictus Games took place in September 2014 at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, United Kingdom.The 2014 opening ceremony was attended by Prince Harry, British Prime Minister David Cameron, Prince Charles, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Prince William, and Frederik, Crown Prince of Denmark. The event also included a recorded message from the First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama.The second games opened on 8 May 2016 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World, near Orlando, Florida, United States. The opening ceremony was attended by Prince Harry, First Lady of the United States Michelle Obama, former U.S. President George W. Bush and many other dignitaries. U.S. President Barack Obama and Queen Elizabeth II helped make a promotional video for the 2016 event.The third games were held in September 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The 2018 games were held in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia and attended by both Prince Harry and his wife, the former Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex. The 2020 games are scheduled to be held in The Hague, Netherlands.Kazakhstan at the 2017 Summer Universiade
Kazakhstan participated at the 2017 Summer Universiade which was held in Taipei, Taiwan.
Kazakhstan sent a delegation consisting of only 122 competitors for the event competing 13 sporting events. Kazakhstan claimed 16 medals at the multi-sport event.National Paralympic Committee
A National Paralympic Committee (NPC) is a national constituent of the worldwide Paralympic movement. Subject to the controls of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), NPCs are responsible for organizing their people's participation in the Paralympic Games.
The Paralympic Games are a major international multi-sport event where athletes with physical disabilities compete; this includes athletes with mobility disabilities, amputations, blindness, and cerebral palsy. There are Winter and Summer Paralympic Games, which are held immediately following their respective Olympic Games, in the same host city.
As of 2012, there are 174 NPC members of the IPC. Only NPCs in good standing may enter athletes in the Paralympic Games. Within countries, some NPCs serve as the national governing body for one or more sports, while others only act as the IPC member with responsibility for Paralympic Games.Universiade
The Universiade is an international multi-sport event, organized for university athletes by the International University Sports Federation (FISU). The name is a combination of the words "University" and "olympiad". The Universiade is often referred to in English as the World University Games or World Student Games; however, this latter term can also refer to competitions for sub-University grades students The Universiade is the largest multi-sport event in the world apart from the Olympic Games. The most recent games were in 2017: the Winter Universiade was in Almaty, Kazakhstan, while the Summer Universiade was held in Taipei, Taiwan. The 2019 Winter Universiade took place in Krasnoyarsk, Russian Federation, between the 2nd and 12th March 2019, and the 2019 Summer Universiade will be held in Naples, Italy between 3 and 14 July.Warrior Games
The Warrior Games is a multi-sport event for wounded, injured or ill service personnel and veterans organized by the United States Department of Defense (DoD).