Decathlon for Men at Olympics: Decathlon is a combined event consisting of ten events-four track and six field events. The events included in the decathlon program are-
The decathlon competition is held in two days. The events contested in the first day are 100 meter sprint, long jump, shot put, high jump and the 400 meter event. The 110 meter hurdle, discus throw, pole vault, javelin throw and the 1500 meter event are held on the second day.
The event decathlon was originated from "pentathlon", which was held in the ancient Summer Games. The word "decathlon" is from Greek origin. The word can be broken into two parts, "deka" meaning "ten" and "athlon" meaning "contest". The decathlon was contested for the first time in 1911 at Sweden.
In the decathlon competition, the athletes are tested on the ground of their speed, stamina, potency, expertise and individuality. The first day events of the decathlon competition demand excellent speed, power and jumping ability. Technique and stamina are the key to the success in the events contested in the second day. The athletes do not need to finish in top three positions in the events to win the competition. A point table is maintained to score the athletes' performances in the ten events. The total point scored by the individuals is used to determine the winner of the competition.
Decathlon for Men in Summer Olympics: Decathlon competition is exclusively men's event in the Summer Games. The event was introduced to the Olympic schedule in the 1912 Stockholm Summer Games. A scoring table was maintained for keeping the scores of the events. Since then, the decathlon competition has been held in every Olympics.
Rules for Decathlon for Men: The International Association of Athletics Federations or IAAF sets rules for the track and field events. The rules set for the decathlon competition at the international level are-
Medal Winners in the Decathlon for Men: The athletes of the United States of America have been dominating the domain of the decathlon. Roman Sebrle, Erki Nool, Dan O'Brien, Robert Zmelik, Christian Schenk, Daley Thompson, Bruce Jenner, Nikolai Viktorovich Avilov, Bill Toomey, Willi Holdorf, Rafer Johnson, Milt Campbell, Bob Mathias, Bryan Clay, Glenn Morris, James Bausch, Siegfried Wentz, Paavo Yrjola, Tomas Dvorak, Harold Osborn, Helge Lovland, Jim Thorpe and Hugo Wieslander are some famous athletes who have won medals in the decathlon competitions at the international level.
Trivia: In the 1912 Stockholm Summer Games, Jim Thorpe won gold medal in the decathlon event. However, on the revelation of his professional status, he was striped of his gold medal along with his other Olympic titles in the game.
Bob Mathias of the United States of America became the youngest athlete to win the Olympic decathlon title in the 1948 London Summer Games.