Paris Olympics 2024: four new sports to be included in Games - what is Breaking? Origins of urban dance explained

Breaking and Surfing will be two of four new disciplines included in Paris Games next year

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The Paris Olympics is just over a year away with preparation and excitement building up. It will only have been three years since the last Olympics but the French are ready to lift the bar high as they welcome four new sports to the competition.

Over the years, there have been a total of 42 sports, spanning 55 disciplines, included in the Olympic programme and while there were 33 sports in Tokyo 2020, there is set to be one fewer next year as Paris makes way for their new disciplines.

As the world of athletics and competitive sport gears up for next summer’s competition, here is all you need to know about what sports to expect in the French capital...

What are the four new sports?

Paris 2024 submitted its proposal to the ICO to integrate four new sports which are closely associated with youth and reward creativity as well as athletic ability. These sports are : Breaking, Sport Climbing, Skateboarding and Surfing.

The Paris 2024 organisations believe that all four are easy to take up and participants form communities that are very active on social media.

What is ‘Breaking’?

Breaking or ‘break-dancing’ is an urban dance style originating from the Bronx borough of New York. It was first developed during the 1070s as part of the growing hip-hop culture. The sport has its roots in a peace movement which followed a difficult period of gang violence, ending with a peace treaty being signed and as time moved on, confrontation was replaced by creativity with gang members meeting at improvised parties, famously known as ‘block parties’.

Breaking in Washington Square Park in New York in 1970sBreaking in Washington Square Park in New York in 1970s
Breaking in Washington Square Park in New York in 1970s

It is characterised by a combination of athletic moves, including spins, flips and other complex body movements. Breaking athletes are reportedly known as ‘B-Boys’ and ‘B-Girls’ with the ‘B’ referring to ‘break’, a brief instrumental interlude with intense beats in music. The Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires 2018 was the first to showcase breaking and welcomed 12 B-Boys and 12 B-Girls to the competition.

The Paris 2024 will see the breaking competition take place at La Concord and the event is set to feature 16 B-boys and B-Girls who will face off in 1v1 battles to music played randomly by a DJ.

A Trivium Value System is used to assess performances and these use three factors: Physicality Quality (body), Artistic Quality (for the mind) and Interpretive quality (soul) and each category will make up one-third of the entire score.

What are the sports for 2024 Olympics?

The are the usual 28 sports taking part at the Olympics:

  • Archery
  • Athletics
  • Badminton
  • Basketball
  • Basketball 3x3
  • Boxing
  • Canoe Slalom
  • Canoe sprint
  • Road cycling
  • Cycling track
  • Mountain biking
  • BMX freestyle
  • BMX racing
  • Equestrian
  • Fencing
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Artistic gymnastics
  • Rhythmic gymnastics
  • Trampoline
  • Handball
  • Hockey
  • Judo
  • Modern pentathlon
  • Rowing
  • Rugby
  • Sailing
  • Shooting
  • Table tennis
  • Taekwondo
  • Tennis
  • Triathlon
  • Volleyball
  • Beach volleyball
  • Diving
  • Marathon swimming
  • Artistic Swimming
  • Swimming
  • Water polo
  • Weightlifting
  • Wrestling