With London 2012 just over one month away, this year’s Olympic Day on 23 June comes at just the right moment to spread excitement about the Games, the athletes and the Olympic values. Even more than that, it is a day for everybody to get off the couch, put on their trainers, do sports and have fun.
From Albania to Zimbabwe – from Lausanne to Olympia – and everywhere in between, people of all ages and abilities will be participating in Olympic-themed events organised by National Olympic Committees (NOCs), joining in the IOC’s contest on Foursquare or sharing via Twitter and Facebook the sports activities they have been doing.
Snapshots from the continents
The majority of the 204 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) are organising educational, cultural and sports activities under the motto “Move, Learn and Discover”, which are featured on a world map on the IOC website.
With more than 700 events going on nationwide, the United States will see its largest Olympic Day celebration in history. For instance, kids in New York City will learn to skate with Olympic gold medallist Sarah Hughes, while in Sandy, Utah, there will be a special training session featuring the 2012 Olympic Women's Soccer Team, providing fans with the opportunity to watch and interact with the team before they compete in the London Games.
China celebrated Olympic Day earlier this month in Beijing and brought together 10, 000 runners for an Olympic Day Run under the motto of “Developing Physical Culture and Building up the People’s Health”. Grouped in red, yellow, blue, green and black teams representing the five Olympic rings, the runners joined a warm-up session led by renowned fitness expert Zhao Zhixin before heading off through the Olympic Park.
In Liechtenstein, the “Lieathlon” features nine different recreational races and people can participate either on foot, with Nordic walking sticks, by bike or on inline skates. The common objective is to cover together an overall distance of 20 000 kilometres, which would correspond to one journey from Liechtenstein to London and back per race.
In Peru, almost 1,000 schoolchildren took part in a traditional drawing and painting competition in the San Borja Olympic Park. Organised in collaboration with Olympic global partner Samsung, this 22nd edition was staged under the theme “Sport and Olympism”.
This week, various schools in Australia welcomed Olympians to allow school children be inspired by their sporting role models and learn from them what it takes to be a champion on and off the field.
©National Olympic Committee of Uzbekistan
Olympic Day goes digital
In addition to the various activities organised around the world, all the IOC’s digital platforms are in Olympic Day mode. The IOC is reaching out to its millions of fans on Facebook and followers on Twitter, asking them to join in the Olympic Day events by doing sports. The tweets are also featured on the world map.
Contest on foursquare
On foursquare, a mobile, location-based social networking site, the IOC is encouraging people to check into sports venues around the world – including past, current and future Olympic stadiums and training centres. When users check in to at least two affiliated venues and follow the IOC on foursquare, they unlock the official “Get Fit for Olympic Day” badge and will be directed to enter a contest to win a trip to the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London. Over 33,000 people have subscribed already.
The IOC’s page on foursquare, located at http://foursquare.com/Olympics, features historical facts about the Games and information about Olympic stadiums and facilities, and will soon feature locations where athletes have trained and places that have inspired them.
Olympic Day was introduced in 1948 to commemorate the birth of the modern Olympic Games on 23 June 1894 at the Sorbonne in Paris. The goal was to promote participation in sport across the globe regardless of age, gender or athletic ability, and the number of participants has steadily increased over the years. Today, hundreds of thousands of people – young and old – get moving and participate in sports and other activities, such as runs, exhibitions, music and educational seminars.
If you want to get active on Olympic Day and share in the fun, please join us on the following platforms and tell us what you are up to!
RSVP to the event on Facebook here
©National Olympic Committee of Uzbekistan