How Long Are the Olympics?

The 16 days of the Olympic Games commences with the opening ceremony. Editorial credit: Paolo Bona /
The 16 days of the Olympic Games commences with the opening ceremony. Editorial credit: Paolo Bona /

The Olympic Games are an international sporting competition that has its origin from ancient Greece. Starting in the 770 BCE, the Olympic Games used to be undertaken after every four years. The emergence of the Christian era abolished the Olympics for several years with the firm belief that the event had pagan connotations, but it was re-introduced in 1896 and the trend has been maintained ever since.

Olympic Rules and Regulations

The growth witnessed in the Olympics has over the years fostered a level of professionalism among the organizers and competitors. From the rules that were created in 1892 by Baron de Coubertin on how the events would be conducted efficiently, other Olympic rules have been added for proper management and coordination of the event. The core rules of the Olympic Games are that the events will be held after every four years in different cities all around the world. The IOC-International Olympic Committee Executive Board of the Olympic Games created a code of conduct to prevent any acts of manipulation of the competition. All the different sports competitions in the Olympics have specific rules with regards to the competitors’ age, gender, and drug tests taken to ensure that the games are fair. The Olympic rules in some places have also prevented the participants from engaging in betting on Olympic events with the aim of promoting clean athletes.

Opening Ceremony

The host nation of the Olympic Games would typically welcome all the teams from the different participating countries on the first day. The national anthems of all the countries present are played, hence the reason why the opening ceremony of the Olympic events takes a few days to complete. After the welcome ceremony, the opening ceremony of the event commences and all the countries participating are welcomed into the open stadium while holding high their respective national flags. The head of state of the hosting country would usually announce the official opening of the Olympic Games. The speech is then given by the International Olympic Committee president, after which the Olympic flag is shown to the crowds. To fulfill the Olympic opening ceremony rules which started way back in Greece, doves are let out into the open. One athlete from each of the participating countries takes an oath openly, and the famous Olympic torch flames are used to light the cauldron. This is followed by an elaborate performance by the host nation showcasing their cultural diversity and might.

Ceremony Protocols

After completing the opening ceremony, the competitions now start, taking the remaining 14 days. All the rules that are stipulated for each game are followed by the leadership of the appointed Olympic managers to ensure that the events run smoothly and at the scheduled time. After the completion of each scheduled event, medals ceremonies are undertaken to honor the winners.

Closing Ceremony

The aim of these valued 16-day Olympic competitions is to bring about friendly relations between nations all over the world. After the completion of all the games as planned, the closing ceremony commences with the matching of all athletes who participated together symbolizing the union of the entire world as ‘one.' Flags from Greece, the current hosting nation, and the nation that will be hosting the next Olympic Games, are showcased.


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