Olympic Movement: The Summer Games involve a number of organizations. The main aim of these organizations is to organize Summer Games. All these organizations taken together form the Olympic Movement. These organizations operate following the rules and guidelines mentioned in the Olympic Charter. The term Olympic Movement also means to include everybody and everything involved in the Summer Games - national sport governing bodies, athletes, media, and sponsors of the Summer Games.
The Birth of the Olympic Movement: Many countries started to realize the importance of physical education and exercise in the 19th century. The athletic movement gained momentum in England, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands, and America. The force behind the international Olympic Movement that spawned the revived Games was a French educator, Pierre de Coubertin. Coubertin was desperate to reform the education system of France. This desperation had led to his interest in reviving the Summer Games. With the inventions of railways and the telegraph, interest in international athletic competitions increased. It was the perfect time for the revival of the Summer Games, described by Coubertin as " the logical culmination of a great movement." When the ancient city of Olympia was excavated, Coubertin started to campaign for the revival of the Summer Games as an international event. His views were accepted and the modern Olympics were born in 1896. This also marks the birth of the Olympic Movement.
The Structure of the Olympic Movement: Many organizations are involved in the Olympic Movement. At the heart core of the Olympic Movement is the International Olympic Committee. The International Olympic Committee is also known as IOC. This committee can be considered to be the government of the Olympics. IOC takes care of the daily problems, and makes all the important decisions like the host city of the Summer Games. The committee also decides on the programs of the Olympics. In the Olympic Movement, three groups of organizations operate on a specified level. These groups are -
- International Federations (IFs) - these are the governing bodies of a sport
- National Olympic Committees (NOCs) - these organizations regulate the Olympic Movement within each country
- Organizing Committees for the Summer Games (OCOGs) - these organizations take care of the organization of a particular celebration of the Summer Games
202 NOCs and 35 IFs are part of the Olympic Movement at present. OCOGs are dissolved after the completion of each Summer Games.