Tuesday, 28 May 2024

Shooting at the Olympics

Shooting has a long-standing history in the Olympic Games program, with some changes to the events over the years. The only two instances where shooting was not included in the Olympic program were in 1904 and 1928. In a pursuit for gender equality, three men’s Olympic shooting events (rifle prone, free pistol, and double trap) will be replaced by mixed team competitions for Tokyo 2020. This change will also bring about an equal distribution of competitors between men and women for the first time.

Current Olympic Shooting Events (for 2020)

Pistol class

  • 10m air pistol (men and women)
  • 25m rapid-fire pistol (men)
  • 25m pistol (women)
  • air pistol team (mixed)

Rifle class

  • 10m air rifle (men and women)
  • air rifle team (mixed)
  • 50m rifle three positions (men and women)

Shotgun class

  • Trap (men and women)
  • Trap team (mixed)
  • Skeet (men and women)

Fascinating Facts

  • Pigeon shooting was a sport in the 1900 Olympics, but it was thankfully short-lived. It was the only time animals were intentionally killed during an Olympic event.
  • At the 1906 Intercalated Games, a dueling pistol event took place, where competitors shot at human silhouettes dressed in frock coats with a bull’s eye on the dummy’s chest.
  • In conjunction with the 1908 Olympic Games, a demonstration of a new sport involving dueling pistols occurred. Competitors, heavily protected, faced off and shot wax bullets at each other.
  • Women’s shooting events were introduced to the Olympics in 1984, including three position rifle, air rifle, and sport pistol.
  • The first brothers to win Olympic gold medals in shooting were Americans John and Sumner Paine. They achieved this feat in the military pistol and free pistol shooting events respectively in 1896.
  • Hungarian shooter, Károly Takács, who was right-handed, had his shooting hand shattered by a grenade in 1938. He overcame this setback by teaching himself to shoot with his left hand. Ten years later, he won the gold medal in the rapid-fire pistol event at the 1948 London Games.
  • Oscar Swahn of Sweden holds the record for being the oldest ever Olympian. He won a gold medal for shooting at the 1912 Olympics when he was 65 years old and took a silver medal eight years later in 1920 when he was 72 years and 281 days old. Although he qualified for the 1924 Olympics, he withdrew without competing.
  • Shooter Jasna Šekarić is one of only two athletes to compete under four different flags at the Olympics. She initially competed for Yugoslavia at Seoul in 1988, winning a gold medal in the 10-meter air rifle event. She then represented the Olympic flag at Barcelona 1992. At Atlanta 1996, Sydney 2000, and Athens 2004, she represented Serbia and Montenegro. In 2008 and 2012, she competed for Serbia following Montenegro’s independence.
  • American skeet shooter Kim Rhode achieved a remarkable feat by winning six medals in six consecutive Olympic Games between 1996 and 2016, which includes three gold medals.
  • The best all-time performing shooter at the Olympic Games is Carl Osburn from the USA, who won 11 medals between 1912 and 1924. For more information, check out the Greatest Shooters at the Olympics.
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Question: Are there any discontinued shooting events at the Olympics?
Answer: Yes, there have been shooting events that are no longer part of the Olympic program.

Question: Are there any demonstration shooting events at the Olympics?
Answer: There have been instances of demonstration shooting events coinciding with the Olympic Games.

Question: Is shooting a part of the Paralympics?
Answer: Shooting is not included in the Paralympic program.

Question: Where can I find a list of all Olympic sports?
Answer: You can find a comprehensive list of Olympic sports on the Auralpressure website.


Shooting has played a prominent role in the Olympic Games, evolving over time to adapt to changing circumstances. As we approach Tokyo 2020, we anticipate an exciting shift towards mixed team competitions, promoting both gender equality and a more inclusive atmosphere. The Olympics have witnessed remarkable achievements and inspiring stories within the shooting discipline, showcasing the resilience, skill, and dedication of its athletes. For more information and updates on shooting at the Olympics, visit Auralpressure.