Chess, an Olympic sport?

Chess OlympicsChess Olympics

At the 2000 Sydney Olympics chess was included as a trial sport for display. However, both speed matches played ended in a draw and little has been said about it until Time magazine’s Meaghan Haire posted “Should Chess Be an Olympic Sport?” on August 5th.

Should the Olympic committee consider adding mental sports like chess, bridge, or Go? What about a combo of mental and physical like chess boxing?

Respond here or even better share your thoughts and play some chess this Sunday, August 17 at Pittsfield Branch. Join us 1-4 p.m. for Chesstastic!


It seems kind of weird to to have chess in the olympics,but it is up to the officials on this one. Maybe in the future the olympics will host all different games and sports,like bungey jumping and water skiing. That will be the day!

I was listening to radiolab the other day, and it was an incredibly interesting program about multiple universes.
I think that Robert Krulwich speaks around the country, it would be awesome if AADL got him to speak here. I'm not quite sure
what this has to do with chess though....
Maybe he could speak about chess.

Hey, nalim, that is an excellent idea! We will look into it and see if we can get him, maybe both him and Jad Abumrad to talk about the changing face of radio... that would be an awesome event! Thanks for the idea and stay tuned....


Actually chess, go, and bridge are all recognized by the IOC as being "sports." They fall under the same category as other sports such as rugby or cricket, which are recognized but are not represented at the actual olympic games.

This year, actually, they are holding the first World Mind Sport Games, or World Mind Sport Olympiad in Bejing beginning October 3rd. Games represented will include chess, bridge, go, draughts, and chinese chess (in honor of the host country). The International Mind Sports Association (IMSA, including all the games except chinese chess) will try to hold this event every olympic year in the same city as the Olympics in an effort to have these games included in the actual Olympics, possibly as non-medaling sports. There has been a pretty big push by each international organization to be first recognized as sports and now to be represented in the games, and this is just a continuation of that.

How am I so up to date on this info? Well, I'll be a member of the 6-man under-26 bridge team competing for the U.S. in Bejing this October. :-)

But no, I don't think any of these games should be included in the actual Olympics. You can be a passable bridge player if you inherently possess good logic and intuition. You can be great if you spend a few hours a week at improving for many years. The best bridge players are usually over 50 years old because it is a game of experience. Yes, it is mentally fatigueing, but to be the best you don't need to spend 6 exhausting hours a day in the pool like Phelps or these other atheletes. It's difficult, but it's not a sport.