Olympic Games

The Olympics section gives you an insight into the Olympic sports and the Olympic spirit.

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How the First Olympics Worked

Before today's spandex-clad (and some sequined) Olympians set their sights on the gold, silver or bronze, ancient Greeks competed for victory. How did the games begin, and why were the athletes gunning for olive oil?

What is skeleton? Is it some sort of sledding sport?

Imagine sliding down an icy hill, with your face only a few inches away from the ground -- at 80 miles per hour. Learn about the intense winter Olympisc sport of skeleton, and how the competition works.

How Olympic Timing Works

In timed Olympic events, the difference between gold and silver can come down to a fraction of a second. You won't find that kind of accuracy in your typical wristwatch. Find out about the systems (and backup systems) that keep Olympic timing honest.

How Olympic Torches Work

The Olympics aren't too far off so get ready! This article chronicles the history of the Olympic torch reveals how it is designed to stay lit through all weather conditions and follows its path from Olympia Greece to the Olympic Games.

In a track meet how are false starts detected?

When every fraction of a second counts, a false start can completely change the outcome of a race. How are officials quick enough detect a false start?

How Pole Vaulting Works

The pole vault originated in Europe where men used the pole to cross canals filled with water. In this article we will learn a little bit about the history of pole vaulting and then explore the physics of the sport.

How Fencing Equipment Works

If you have been watching competitive fencing at the Olympics or in a college match, you know that fencing is an unusual sport, and it uses some very interesting equipment for scoring! Learn the ins and outs of different types of swordsmanship!

How Performance-enhancing Drugs Work

It seems as if hardly a day passes without a sports star being busted for using performance-enhancing drugs. Even with the sophisticated random and mandatory drug testing in most sports, a lot of athletes still think taking them is worth the risk. Why is that and how do these drugs really work?