No jazz, hip hop, or classical, here. Just sports; Olympic ones.
More events given the green light to feature in the official program of London 2012:

Canoeing, Cycling, and Diving.

My thanks again to, for background facts and figures.



A canoe or kayak  is a light, narrow open (canoe) or closed (kayak) boat. Its driver or paddler propels the craft forward from a kneeling position, using a single or double-bladed paddle. In strict terms, a canoe uses single-bladed and a kayak double-bladed paddles. Paddles may not be fixed to the boat, in any way.

The blade is the wide part of a paddle which passes through the water. Bent-shaft paddles have (duh) a bend in the shaft, intended to increase power, but reducing overall control.

The cockpit is the enclosed space in a kayak or slalom canoe where the paddler(s) sit.
Each paddler has a spraydeck or splashcover, which is a flexible covering fitted to the paddler’s waist that encloses the cockpit of a canoe or kayak to ensure that the boat is waterproof.

Helmets and life-jackets must be worn, as standard.

Canoe / Kayak Slalom was modeled on ski slalom – the winter ski-race down a zigzag course.
Floating obstacles are placed at various points along the water course, for the canoe and kayak events.

The slalom began in Switzerland in 1932 – with the first recorded competition taking place in 1933 – and was performed on flat water, initially. It was later switched to white water rapids.

In canoe slalom the boats are small, light, and agile, allowing for greater manoeuvrability through the rapids.

Canoe slalom made its debut at the 1972 Munich Games. Slalom racing did not appear again until the 1992 Games in Barcelona. Canoe slalom racers compete in four events, three for men and one for women, over the same course.

Canoe / Kayak Sprint features long, streamlined boats in a straight speed race – the traditional form of canoe sport.

Canoe sport competitions began in the mid-19th century. The Royal Canoe Club of London was formed in 1866 and was the first dedicated organization. In 1871 the New York Canoe Club was founded.

The first women’s competition was organized in Russia. By the 1890s, canoe sport was popular all over Europe.

In 1924 in Paris, flatwater canoeing featured at the Games as a demonstration sport.
Canoe sprints entered the Olympics as an official event in 1936, in Berlin.

Since the 1948 Games in London, women have competed in the kayak event only.

The Olympic events take place over 500 and 1,000 metres.
For the 2012 Games in London, the three men’s flatwater 500 metres events will be replaced by 200m events.


Cycling has been popular ever since bicycles were invented in the mid-18th century. It has featured in every Olympic Games. Road cycling, however, was not on the program of the Paris 1900, St Louis 1904 or London 1908 Games.


Bicycle Motocross or BMX Cycling originated in California in the late 1960s, inspired by motocross (which uses powered motorbikes). Its principle is simple: eight riders compete on a track filled with jumps, tight bends and obstacles.

It soon became popular. They even made a movie about it, in the 1980s. (“BMX Bandits”, remember?)

In April 1981, the International BMX Federation was founded. Once it became evident that the sport had more in common with cycling than motorcycling, BMX was officially recognized in 1993 as part of the International Cycling Union (UCI).

The sport made its Olympic debut at the 2008 Beijing Games.
The men’s event was won by Latvia’s Maris Strombergs. In the women’s event, Anne-Caroline Chausson of France took the first Olympic title in this discipline.

In the 1970s, tough new bikes that relished rough terrain were developed. The bikes had fatter tires, rapid-shift gears, drum brakes and ground-breaking suspension. They gave thrill-seeking cyclists new freedom, and gave birth to a new sport: mountain biking.

The members of the Velo Club Mount Tamalpais in California generally receive the credit for establishing mountain biking as a sport. They invented the Repack Downhill race, held regularly between 1976 and 1979 in San Francisco. The races attracted riders from far and wide, and drew considerable media attention.

The first national mountain bike championships were held in 1983 in the USA. The first mountain bike World Championships, recognized by the International Cycling Union (UCI), took place in 1990.

Mountain Bike Cycling made its debut as an Olympic discipline at the Atlanta Games in 1996, with a cross-country event for men and women. The program has remained unchanged ever since.

Among the big names is Julien Absalon of France, a two-time gold-medal winner – in 2004 in Athens and in 2008 in Beijing.

Road Cycling

Road Cycling is among the rare sports that have always featured on the Olympic program.

The first road cycling event took place in 1896 on the marathon route at the first Games of the modern era in Athens. The race started in Athens, headed towards Marathon, then returned to Athens, at the Phaliron velodrome.

Since the 1912 Games in Stockholm, the individual pursuit has been a part of each edition of the Games. The team time trial was on the program between 1912 and 1992. 1996 marked the debut of the individual time trial at the Games in Atlanta.

Olympic cycling was added to the women’s program at Los Angeles 1984, with an individual road event. Later, in 1996, the individual time trial was included in women’s Olympic cycling, as it for the men’s.

Track Cycling dates back to 1870, when track races in England were regularly attracting large crowds.

The riders competed on wooden indoor tracks that closely resembled the modern velodromes of today. Such tracks ensured the event could be competed all year round. For promoters there was an even greater benefit – spectators could be charged an entrance fee!

Track cycling was included in the inaugural Olympic Games of 1896, and has featured ever since, with the exception of the 1912 Games in Stockholm, when only the road race was staged.

Between 1924 and 1992, the range of events included sprint, time trial over one kilometer, tandem and team pursuit. The individual pursuit was added to the program of the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, and the tandem was dropped after the 1972 Games in Munich.

Women have competed in the track events since the Seoul Games in 1988, the year that also marked the appearance of women in the sprint event. Women competed for the first time in the individual pursuit in 1992.

At the Sydney Games in 2000, several track events were introduced: 500m time trial for women, but also keirin, American and sprint for men.



Diving as a human activity has been with us ever since people, high places, and large bodies of water have coincided.

Competitive diving originated in Sweden and Germany in the 18th and 19th centuries. The sport was primarily practised by gymnasts, performing tumbling routines into the water.

In the late 19th century a group of Swedish divers visited Great Britain. They put on diving displays that proved hugely popular and led to the formation of the first diving organization, the Amateur Diving Association, in 1901.

Diving was included in the Olympics for the first time at the 1904 Games in St Louis.

For Olympic competition, the pool must be at least 5 meters deep.

The springboard is a flexible diving board that can be adjusted to create more or less spring. It must be at least 4.8 meters long and half a meter wide, with a non-slip surface.

For platform diving, the board must be at least 6 meters long and 2 meters wide, with a non-slip surface.

For synchronized diving the platform must be 3 meters wide.

The springboard and platform events have been included since the 1908 Olympic Games in London.

Women have taken part in the diving events since the Stockholm Games of 1912.

The diving program has remained much the same, since the 1928 Games in Amsterdam.
Men and women take part in 10-meter high-dive and 3-meter springboard events.

In 2000, the Sydney Games witnessed the debut of synchronized diving, on both the springboard and the platform.

For London 2012, the events list looks like this:

10m platform men
3m springboard men
synchronized diving 10m platform men
synchronized diving 3m springboard men
10m platform women
3m springboard women
synchronized diving 10m platform women
synchronized diving 3m springboard women

By the end of the 1980s, when the American Greg Louganis (who is considered the greatest diver ever) was still in competition, Chinese divers managed to achieve some notable victories. Since Louganis retired, China has dominated the men’s events. In recent years, China’s women divers have also proved themselves unbeatable.

So much for the Cool CDs.

Es are Good, so that’s what I’ll be covering, next.

Till then.