The idea of having Olympic Games is more than 2,500 years old. According to Greek legend the Olympic Games were started by Hercules, son of Zens.
The first records of Olympic Games we have those held in 776 B.C. on the plain Olympia. They were held every four years for more than 1,000 years, until the Romans abolished them in 394 A.D.
The ancient Greeks considered the games so important that they measured time by the interval between them which they called an Olympiad. Greeks were of the view that the body as well as the mind and spirit should be developed through games. They didn’t allow anything to interfere with holding the games. If a war happened to be going on, the war was stopped!
In 1894, following the suggestion of a Frenchman called Baron Pierre de Coubertin, an International Congress of fifteen nations was held in Paris. The Congress unanimously agreed to revive the games and to hold them every four years. In 1896, the first of the modern Olympic Games was held in the rebuilt stadium at Athens, Greece.
The modern Olympics are governed by an International Olympic Committee, and each nation has its own National Olympic Committee which is responsible for its country’s participation in the Olympics. In time, many sports such as basketball, water polo, soccer, cycling, shooting and field hockey have been included in the Olympic Games.