Winter Olympic Games
The Winter Olympic Games is a major international sporting event that occurs once every four years. The first celebration of the Winter Olympics was held in Chamonix, France, in 1924. The original sports were alpine and cross-country skiing, figure skating, ice hockey, Nordic combined, ski jumping and speed skating. The Games were held every four years from 1924 until 1936, after which they were interrupted by World War II. The Olympics resumed in 1948 and were celebrated every four years. The Winter and Summer Olympic Games were held in the same years until 1992, after a 1986 decision by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to place the Summer and Winter Games on separate four-year cycles in alternating even-numbered years. Because of the change, the next Winter Olympics after 1992 was in 1994.
The Winter Games have evolved since their inception. Sports have been added and some of them, such as luge, short track speed skating and freestyle skiing, have earned a permanent spot on the Olympic program. Others, such as speed skiing, bandy and skijoring, were demonstration sports but never incorporated as an Olympic sports.
The Winter Olympic Games have been hosted on three continents, but never in a country in the southern hemisphere. The United States has hosted the Games four times; France has been the host three times; Austria, Canada, Japan, Italy, Norway and Switzerland have hosted the Games twice. In 2014 Sochi was the first Russian city to host the Winter Olympics. The IOC has selected Pyeongchang, South Korea, to host the 2018 Winter Olympics Games and Beijing, China to host the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. As of 2017 no city in the southern hemisphere had applied to host the cold-weather-dependent Winter Olympics, held in February, at the height of the southern hemispere's summer.
There are 12 countries - Austria, Canada, Finland, France, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States - have attended every Winter Olympic Game. Six of those (Austria, Canada, Finland, Norway, Sweden and the United States) have earned medals at every Winter Olympic Game, and only one - the United States - has earned gold at each Game. Norway leads the all-time medal table. Germany, Japan, and Russia have been banned at times from competing in the Games.
The 2018 Winter Olympic Games run from the 9th to the 25th of February. The games feature 102 events in fifteen sports, with the addition of "big air" snowboarding, mass start speed skating, mixed doubles curling, and mixed team alpine skiing to the Winter Olympic program. A total of 2,952 athletes from 92 National Olympic Committees are expected to compete, including the debut of Ecuador, Eritrea, Kosovo, Malaysia, Nigeria and Singapore.
What have you learned from this article about the Winter Olympic Games?
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What event or events did you enjoy watching? Which athletes impressed you?
What is special about the Olympic Games? What don't you like about the Olympic Games?
Mixed doubles curling - 混双冰壶：