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Olympic Games - athletes

60 second histories

This video covers:  Who competed in the Olympics, how they trained and competed and the prize they could expect as a champion.

Khairete, or should I say hello? You know athletes travel from all over Greece to compete in the Olympic games. You can only compete if you are a free-born Greek male, slaves aren’t allowed. Women weren’t allowed either at first, but now they’re allowed to enter a horse or a team for the chariot race. Women have their own separate games in honour of Hera, the wife of Zeus, but it’s only unmarried women who can compete in them. I work at the palaestra, the wrestling school, where I train our young men hard for at least a month before the games. I instruct them in their exercises and their diet which is most important to ensure they’re in peak condition. The prize to the victor is a crown of olive leaves and of course the prestige and fame of being a winner. Now the athletes compete naked, not just to show off their muscles and physique but because it’s so hot here in the middle of summer. That’s why married women aren’t allowed in the stadium, any woman caught sneaking would be punished!
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