Sporting Life

The new Olympics: Faster, Higher, Stronger, Funkier

Once upon an Olympic time the shot put was two-handed, swimming had an obstacle race and men shot a running deer in search of a gold medal. Stay calm, it wasn't real.

Nothing stays the same at the Olympics, not records, equipment or coaches, not rules, scoring systems or dress. At the 1912 Olympics, British women wore a silk suit to swim in and underwear beneath because it became see-through when wet. Fortunately this fashion did not last.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on March 17, 2019, with the headline 'The new Olympics: Faster, Higher, Stronger, Funkier'. Print Edition | Subscribe