Discontinued Olympic Sports

The Economist published this handy chart of sports that used to be in the Olympics but aren’t any more:

Added to this list should be Softball, which was an Olympic sport from 1996-2008 and interestingly one of the only Olympic sports that was exclusively played by women, and Baseball, which was an Olympic sport from 1992-2008. Both sports were eliminated because the IOC said they weren’t allegedly “universal” enough.

Of the older sports, though, wouldn’t it be cool to see Tug-Of-War again? Heck how about the Live Pigeon Shoot, the Running Deer Shoot, and the Dueling?

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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. James H says:

    I’d like to see the 500 Yard Lawyer Tackle.

  2. Contracts says:

    “Javelin freestyle”? I think I’d pass on being a spectator for that one.

  3. The duelling pistol event was held twice, in 1906 (at the Intercallated Games – not officially recognized by the IOC) and 1912. This event required competitors to shoot at manniquins dressed in frock coats. There was a Bull’s eye were on the dummy’s throat.


  4. Jenos Idanian #13 says:


    Team USA sweeps. Christina Hendricks for the gold, Kat Dennings gets the silver, and Jennifer Love Hewitt scores the bronze.

  5. Hal 10000 says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:

    Man, I was thinking the same thing. We would sweep the medal in that event.

  6. Jeremy says:
  7. Franklin says:

    @john personna: The event? Or the spelling and grammar in that quote?

  8. jfoobar says:

    There was a shooting event called “Running Target” that was in the Olympics until 2004, the target being paper targets. Both of those events were dropped in the events contraction that occurred then. Also dropped was women’s double trap, which was an event originally created exclusively for women before the 1996 Atlanta games and the event in which the amazing Kim Rhode won the first three of her five Olympic medals.

    The story about how double trap was created and then later removed from the games (but still exists as an event for men) is an amazing example of overt sexism, but it is too long to type out here.