The 5 Safest Olympic Disciplines of Beijing

These 5 Olympic disciplines have been voted safest of all. At least if you ask the Chinese condom brand makers Elasun: Archery, Swimming, Cycling, Basketball and Rings Men. Although the English slogan “Sports make you health” seems somewhat broken, this little marketing campaign is quite well done. By the way “avoiding pregnancy” in Chinese (“Bi-yun”) has become a way to say “to avoid the Olympics” (“Ao-yun” meaning the Olympic Games in mandarin Chinese). [Via smh/Hutcheon]

But let’s have a look at these 5 disciplines now.

Archery was a feature of the Olympic Games from 1900 to 1920, but then disappeared for more than 50 years. In 1904, archery was one of the first Olympic sports to include women. This time in Beijing 2008 the events will be:

  • Individual (FITA Olympic round – 70m)
  • Team (FITA Olympic round – 70m)


Basketball is an Olympic discipline since 1936. 12 teams each (women and men) will start this tournament.

  • Basketball is played in 4 periods of 10 minutes each at the Olympic Games. Five-minute overtimes follow if a game is tied.


There will be 4 main cycling disciplines this year: Cycling BMX, Cycling Mountain Bike, Cycling Road and Cycling Track.

Bicycles “were first developed in 1817 and have long since been used as a form of transport. Originally, the front wheel was much larger than the rear wheel, and the rider was elevated a great deal, making them difficult to control and very dangerous.” [IOC]


Rings Men
The Rings are part of the Artistic Gymnastics disciplines. The gymnastics were already featured in the ancient Olympic Games: “Gymnastics has a long, proud history. The sport can be traced back to ancient Greece, where such skills featured in the ancient Olympic Games. Ancient Rome, Persia, India, and China practiced similar disciplines, mostly aimed at preparing young men for battle. The word itself derives from the Greek word gymnos, meaning naked – dress requirements for athletes in those days were minimal, to say the least.” [IOC]

Swimming has become rather a big part of the Olympic Games. There are 16 events to compete and 4 different strokes. Each race has a maximum of 8 swimmers.

  • Freestyle races cover 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1500, 10 000 metres. The 800m is for women only, the 1500m for men only. The butterfly, backstroke and breaststroke races each cover 100 and 200 meters. All four strokes are used in the 200m and 400m individual medley events.


Keep Moving

Although Elasun doesn’t belong among the official tournament sponsors they have done an interesting job in ambush marketing here too.

Elasun is the new Gatorade.

I’m Lovin’ It
McDonald’s is an official sponsor, their logo and slogan gets a new meaning through this Elasun advertisement.

Just Make It
Just make it. Condoms as the equipment for athletes.

So be safe and enjoy the Games in Beijing!


  1. nian
  2. Sumit
  3. Gates

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