International Olympic Day 2021: History, significance and celebrations

International Olympic Day 2021: History, significance and celebrations

Every year on 23 June, International Olympic Day is celebrated across the world. The day was initially observed to promote the idea of the Olympics and in order to celebrate the establishment of the International Olympic Committee (IOC). This committee was formed on 23 June, 1894 in Sorbonne, Paris. The Olympics games were revived by Pierre de Coubertin, as mentioned on the website of the International Olympic Committee.


The first Olympic Day was celebrated on 23 June in 1948 by countries including Venezuela, Belgium, Canada, Switzerland, Portugal, Greece, Austria, Great Britain, and Uruguay.

The story behind the genesis of Olympic Day goes back to 1948. A report about celebrating the Olympic Day was first presented by IOC members in Czechoslovakia Doctor Gruss in 1947. The report was presented at the 41st Session of the International Olympic Committee in Stockholm and was supposed to be a day dedicated to promoting the idea of Olympics.

The proposal was adopted in the next session of IOC in January 1948 which was held in St Moritz. The date of 23 June was chosen by the National Olympic Committees to mark the formation of the IOC which happened on the same day in 1894.

Significance and celebrations

The day is important as it aims to attract people, regardless of their age, towards the Olympics. Its three pillars are move, learn and discover which is aimed at engaging people to perform physical exercises.

The Olympic Day Run has been organised on the International Olympic Day in 150 countries by the National Olympic Committees (NOCs) for the last 20 years. Along with the run, new activities are organised every year which includes celebrating the day at school and meeting top athletes.

People are also informed about other activities in their neighbourhood to promote their participation on Olympic Day.

The upcoming Tokyo Olympics is set to begin one month from today. The Games, postponed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will start on 23 July and finish on 8 August 2021.


Sudhanshu Sharma

Based in Jaipur, Sudhanshu Sharma is a senior editor at Economy News. Previously he has worked for money control and economic times. Sudhanshu is a graduate of economics at the  Amity university Noida.

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