Why Wrestling Should be an Olympic Sport

September 11, 2013
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On September 9, 2013, the IOC (International Olympic Committee) voted to keep wrestling in the 2020 and 2024 Summer Olympic Games. This ended a seven month time period of trying to save Olympic wrestling, dating back to February 2013 when the IOC announced wrestling would be banned. Many people were excited about the fact that Olympic wrestling had been saved, including myself.

The sport of wrestling was one of the first five sports in the Ancient Olympic Games, and has been in the Modern Olympic Games since 1896. The fact that wrestling was even being considered to be eliminated from the Olympic Games makes no sense, because it was one of the original centerpieces of the Olympics. Wrestling, along with running and boxing, were the sports that the Ancient Olympic Games revolved around. Wrestling was actually the decisive event at the end of the ancient pentathlon, which consisted of four other events.

Wrestling can be traced 15,000 years through cave drawings in France. Also, the Babylonians and Egyptians have drawings that depict most wrestlers using holds that are still used in the present-day sport. From this we can see that not only has wrestling been here for a long time, but some aspects of it still remain the same. Wrestling has been a very common sport throughout Europe and was eventually brought to America, mostly from the people of England. Very few sports have been around as long as wrestling has, which is why it is common in so many countries and should be included in the Olympics.

Wrestling isn’t the most common sport in the United States, however it is common in the state of Iowa, where I live. I have been wrestling since I was four years old. Ever since I was in kindergarten, my goal has been to one day become a State Champion, a National Champion, and eventually one day win the Olympics. When I, and I’m sure many others, heard that wrestling was going to be eliminated, I was devastated. To know that I have worked hard since I was four years old and that one day my dream may not come true was a horrible feeling. I challenge you to go to a young wrestler and tell him that one day he may not have the chance to be an Olympic gold medalist, because I know I couldn’t.

Wrestling has been saved for the 2020 and 2024 Olympics, but after that no one knows if it will still last, because wrestling isn’t listed as one of the 25 “core” sports by the IOC as it has been in the past. I think it is a joke that wrestling had to fight for its life in the Olympics. A sport, that was one of the few sports the Olympics revolved around, was almost banned. Even though wrestling is in the Olympics for now, we still have to fight to keep it for good. However, I do get a feeling of comfort knowing that I can go to sleep and still dream about one day possibly becoming an Olympic gold medalist.

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