The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games hosted a Tokyo 2020 New Sport Support Kickoff Event to promote the five new sports that were added to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games this August. The event was held on Monday 10 October, which marks the 50th anniversary of the creation of Sport and Health Day in Japan, as part of the Tokyo 2020 Official Programme of sport and health.
The event venue included a booth introducing the Organising Committee as well as booths introducing the new sports: baseball/softball, karate, skateboarding, sport climbing, and surfing. Attendees were able to have manga photos of themselves taken, posing for manga-style photographs incorporating graphics depicting the new sports.
In addition, young athletes competing in the new sports gathered on the venue's stage to discuss their thoughts about the Tokyo 2020 Games and the appeal of their sports, which they also demonstrated to the event's attendees.
For baseball, Tatsuya Imai, a senior at Sakushin Gakuin High School, and Shoma Fujihira, a senior at Yokohama Senior High School, both of whom competed in the 11th BFA U18 Baseball Championship, talked about their passionate desire to be chosen to represent Japan at the Olympic Games.
For softball, players from the Tokyo Women's College of Physical Education softball club thrilled attendees with a demonstration of their high-speed pitching skill. Watching close up, athletes who had competed at the BFA U18 Baseball Championship were impressed by the speed of the women's pitches.
For karate, members of the Teikyo Senior High School women's karate club discussed the appeal of their sport and demonstrated kata moves together with event attendees, with whom they shared the enjoyable aspects of their martial art.
For skateboarding, athletes Yuto Horigome and Daisuke Ikeda explained to attendees how their families influenced them to take up the sport, and demonstrated their acrobatic skills.
For sport climbing, athlete Mei Kotake spoke of the surprise and joy she felt when her sport was chosen as an official Olympic sport and demonstrated some of its techniques, encouraging the participation of some of the visitors. The attendees cheered when the participants, following Kotake's instructions, managed to scale a sloping wall.
Finally, for surfing, athlete Nao Omura captivated attendees at the venue as she talked about the appeal of her sport and her excitement about the Tokyo 2020 Games.
The eyes of all of the athletes seemed to sparkle as they set themselves the goal of competing in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games four years from now. The event succeeded in familiarising attendees with the new sports that have been added to the Tokyo 2020 Games.