What is the difference between Summer and Winter Olympics?

What is the difference between Summer and Winter Olympics?

The Olympic game is one of the most loved sporting occasions globally due to its extensive sporting activities. Still, most people do not know the difference between the Summer and Winter Olympics, even though they stage hundreds of nations with over six sportsmen and women.

difference between Summer and Winter Olympics
Participants at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Photo: Luis ACOSTA
Source: Getty Images

The Olympics sporting competition has become one of the essential track-and-field events tournaments worth looking forward to. This is because it features several prominent professional sporting activities like football, basketball, table tennis, gymnastics, and racing.

History of the Olympics

The Olympics games were birthed due to the need to promote international agreement between different nations through sports. Pierre de Coubertin, also known as the father of modern Olympic games, was a promoter of this competition. In 1894, the International Olympic Committee (ICO) was formed to plan for the forthcoming Olympic match.

Afterwards, the first Olympic Games were held in Athens on the 6th of April, 1896, and about 245 competitors participated in the sporting event.

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Also, the second Olympic Games took place in Paris in 1900, and it attracted four times more athletes than in the first edition, including the first female participation. On the other hand, the first Winter Olympic game was held in Chamonix, France, in 1924.

Difference between Winter and Summer Olympics

While both sporting events are monitored by the ICO quadrennially (four years interval), there are still some differences between these sporting exhibitions. Some of them are explained below:


The Summer Olympic Games are held during the summer. Also, it gathers together different sportsmen and women of several professions representing their country to contest various medals: gold, silver, and bronze quadrennially.

difference between Summer and Winter Olympics
France's players celebrate their victory during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Photo: YURI CORTEZ
Source: Getty Images

Unlike the summer games, the Winter sporting competition is usually held in the winter season every four years, and it features games that are peculiar to ice and snow. So, is gymnastics in the Winter Olympics? No, gymnastics happens during the summer sporting competition since the winter sporting activities usually contain those held during the winter seasons.

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Place of event

In comparing Summer vs Winter Olympics, the places and sport involved differentiate these two events of the Olympics. For instance, winter events are held in countries like the USA, Canada, and China, away from the Summer Olympic Games, where the temperature is low, and humidity is high.

Some summer games include athletics, swimming, badminton, and fencing. Also, examples of winter sporting activities include figure skating, Biathlon, short track speed skating, and alpine skiing.

Frequency of activity

Winter games hold in three-week intervals, which contrasts with the summer sporting competition with every match simultaneously.

Strategic timing

How often are the modern winter Olympic games held? Although these events occur every four years, the summer and winter events are staggered so that there is an Olympic event every two years.

The summer international competitions are held every leap year (like 2000, 2004, and 2008), and the Winter Olympics are held two years after the leap year (like 2002, 2006, and 2010). Therefore, by implication, the games are held every two years apart.

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What is the difference between the flags of the Summer and Winter Olympics?

There is no known disparity between the Summer and Winter Olympics regarding the flags, banners, and flames. The Olympic flag has five different rings interlaced with one another in different colours. When combined, these colours (blue, red, yellow, black, green) can produce almost all nations’ flags.

The idea of the five interlaced rings is to bring the five different continents together during sporting events. Also, during the competition, various countries and athletes usually represent their country with their flag and the national anthem during the inaugural parades and award ceremony.

Which is better, Summer or Winter Olympics?

Both the Summer and Winter sporting competitions are prestigious multidisciplinary sporting tournaments globally. This is due to the most significant number of games, professions, and participating countries of republics.

Nevertheless, in terms of the most followed sporting competition, the summer sporting activities are followed en mass because it has more sporting activities, countries represented, and athletes in action.

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difference between Summer and Winter Olympics
French players in the women's preliminary round group B basketball match during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Photo: Thomas COEX
Source: Getty Images

Has Winter and Summer Olympics been held the same year?

Before separating the Winter and Summer Olympics, these international events were usually together every four years as Olympiad games.

However, due to the need to continually keep different nations in peace, the IOC separated the event into two unique sporting events known as Summer and Winter Olympic sporting events. As a result, the last Winter and Summer Olympics were held together in 1992.

Needful to note is that there were some years where the sporting competition was supposed to hold but could not. Some of the reasons were civil unrest, global pandemic, and the non-availability of enough funds.

While there is a vast difference between the Summer and Winter Olympics, these two sporting events have been intriguing and entertaining. Since the beginning of the sporting competition, some countries have won more medals. Examples of such are the USA, Soviet Union URS, Great Britain, and France.

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In a related post, Yen.com.gh shared some interesting facts you should know about the ongoing Olympics Games going on in Tokyo. More than 200 countries are present in Japan, with over 11,000 athletes competing in various sporting events.

However, what sporting activities do you know are in the Summer Olympics? On like 28 sports that were available in the previous edition, do you know that five more sports were added this time? Find out the list of the games from the post.

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Source: YEN.com.gh

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