Monday, July 30, 2012

Olympic Round Up: Day 3

Contributed by Emma Booth.
Regional Director, USA Sport Group.

With the London Olympics now in full swing, here is a roundup of my top three sports in days 1, 2 & 3.

Just Dive In
So the hopes of Britain were on the shoulders of 18 year old Tom Daley and his partner Pete Waterfield in the 10m synchronized platform competition today. Looking good up until their fourth dive, they unfortunately just fell short of the medal positions, but it went right down to the wire. The Chinese look phenomenal, winning gold (easily) in both events so far; (women’s 3m synchronized and men’s 10m synchronized). Their perfect execution or incredibly tricky dives is something to be admired, even if you don’t like the sport. The USA have medaled in both events as well so far, the most surprising result of those probably Daniel Boudia and Nick McCrory claiming the bronze in the 10m, at the expense of the Daley & Waterfield. However it is the Mexicans who seem to be the greatest shock of the competition – claiming a silver medal position in the 10m, and seem to be using the ‘do or dive’ philosophy which is go big, or go home

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Olympic Etiquette Tips

Are you going to the Olympics?  Here are some tips for Olympic visitors hoping to get the most out of their experience.  Some well-worthy tips, let us know if you're going and if they came in useful!

Walk on the left: Olympic etiquette tips.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Inside Youth Sports: Control Your Conversation During the Game

Some parents get too involved in their child's youth sport experience, here's some great tips from IYS on watching from the sidelines!

Inside Youth Sports: Control Your Conversation During the Game

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Top 5 Olympic Gold Medal Hopefuls for Team USA

Contributed by Emma Booth.
Regional Director, USA Sport Group.

Michael Phelps (@MichaelPhelps)
Let’s face it, swimmer Michael Phelps will be a gold medal contender even after he hangs up his trunks. 4 years ago he broke the world record for most gold medals in a single Olympic Games – eight. He won't be able to match that record in London though, as Phelps is ‘only’ competing in seven events this year... But will more than likely be on the podium seven times.

Jordyn Wieber (@jordyn_wieber)
16 year old Jordyn Wieber has taken the gymnastic scene by storm. She is already all-around World Champion as of 2011, a pretty impressive feat seeing she is still at high school. She will be leading the women’s team in London 2012, and with class such as Gabrielle Douglas and Alexandra Raisman, they will be very hard to beat.

Monday, July 16, 2012

The History of the Olympic Games - Part 6

Contributed by Emma Booth.
Regional Director, USA Sport Group.

Back to Part 5

Part 6: To London and Beyond

On July 27th, London will become the first city to host the Olympic Games three times (previously in 1908 and 1948). After defeating Moscow, New York and Madrid, it came down to between London and Paris, Jacques Rogge announced that London had won by 4 votes to the thousands gathered in Trafalgar Square (I was there!), and the millions watching around the country. Being held in the East End of London, with aims to regenerate that area of the city, the Olympic Stadium in Stratford was completed in 2011. The mascots and logo have received a fair bit of ridicule (I mean, have you seen them?!), but all in all, the Games in general have been received with great excitement and expectations.

Beyond London, Rio de Janeiro in Brazil won the bid for the 2016 Games, the first time it is to be held in South America. The host of the 2020 Games will be decided on 7th September, 2013, with Istanbul, Tokyo and Madrid as the candidates. Baku in Azerbaijan and Doha in Qatar had also bid to become candidate cities, but were rejected, and Rome, Italy withdrew citing financial reasons.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The History of the Olympic Games - Part 5

Contributed by Emma Booth.
Regional Director, USA Sport Group.

Back to Part 4

Part 5: Breaking Rules and Records

So now we are looking at the Games going into the new millennium, would commercialization and professionalism overshadowing the athletes.

Seoul in South Korea hosted the 1988 Games and although it was deemed a success in many ways, the success was overshadowed by the failings by many athletes of drug tests after their events. Most infamous of these is Canadian Ben Johnson, who won the 100m final in 9.79 seconds, tested positive for steroids, and was disqualified. These Games were also the last where we saw two of the world ‘super powers’ in the Games for the last time as the Soviet Union and East Germany both ceased to exist before the next Games in 1992. The 1992 Games in Barcelona allowed South Africa to compete for the first time since 1960, when they were suspended due to their apartheid policy. The Games also saw the basketball feature NBA players for the first time, and so began the turn from amateurism, to professionalism. The US Men’s Basketball team, nicknamed ‘The Dream Team’ included Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Larry Bird and Patrick Ewing to name a few on their roster, and is widely regarding as the greatest sporting team ever. They won the gold medal in style, the closest of the results being 117 – 85 against Croatia.