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VIII Olympic Congress

   

Prague 1925

© 1925 / International Olympic Committee

For his final Olympic Congress before retiring as president of the IOC, Pierre de Coubertin was determined to return to the broad Olympic themes of previous Congresses which discussed the role of sport in society and other such intellectual pursuits. However, given the now unavoidable necessity for the Olympic Congress to be of a technical nature, two simultaneous Congresses were organized, a pedagogical one and a technical one.

Heritage of Coubertin
Coubertin himself only attended the pedagogical Congress, which debated resolutions ranging from the revival of the ancient gymnasium to the idea that the sports press should be encouraged to give greater attention to pedagogical questions and to include science and arts in reports. The pedagogical Congress was not without its critics, but the IOC expressed its commitment to the heritage of Coubertin by putting the question of pedagogical education on the agenda of every IOC Session.

Successful work
The successful work of the Technical Congress was owed to J Sigfried Edström, president of the IAAF, who was presiding over an Olympic Congress for a second time. The discussion of a new amateur definition occupied much of the time but it remained unresolved. However, most notably, the majority of the delegates did recommend that the Olympic Games be limited to two weeks, a tradition which began at the subsequent Games in Amsterdam in 1928. Prior to that the Olympics had been sprawling affairs spread over several weeks, if not months.