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Skateboarding, surfing and other sports just got approved for Tokyo 2020!

Baseball: Flickr/C Watts/CC BY 2.0; Karate: Flickr/Ian Southwell/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0; Climbing: Flickr/Adam Kabulica/CC BY 2.0; Skateboarding: Flickr/Ricardo Abengoza Hernandez/CC BY-ND 2.0; Surfing: Flickr/Ian Sanderson/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Sometimes new sports are added to the Olympic Games. This year, for instance, golf and rugby are making a comeback. Here’s a look at five more sports that the International Olympic Committee just approved as official events for Tokyo 2020. How cool!

Baseball/softball

Baseball players

Photo by Bjoern licensed CC BY-SA 2.0 

Baseball became an official Olympic sport in 1992 and was last played at Beijing 2008. Softball was part of the Olympics from 1996 to 2008. While both sports were removed from the overall program, they have a good chance of returning to the international sporting event in 2020. If they are added to the Olympics, the sports will each have a competition between six teams. Batter up!

Karate

Kids competing in karate

Photo by Simon Leonard licensed CC BY-NC 2.0 

While the history of karate dates back thousands of years, karate has never been a part of the Olympics. If it is included in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, its first appearance will take place in the very country where it originated – Japan.

Sport Climbing

Man sport climbing on a mountain

Photo by Adam Kubalica licensed CC BY 2.0 

This sport is a form of rock climbing that requires competitors to climb a route up a mountain using bolts that are fixed into the rock. During an Olympic competition, climbers will have just minutes to scramble up a mountainside. They’ll compete one at a time, and whoever climbs the highest during the timed event will capture the gold medal.

Skateboarding

girl skateboarding

Photo by Do512  licensed CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 

The first skateboard came on the scene in 1958 when a California man attached roller skates to a board. The sport now has its own World Cup and is featured in the X-Games – an annual event that focuses on extreme sports. In the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, boarders would compete in “street” or “vert” events. Street events involve skateboarders doing tricks on stairs, rails, and walls. And vert events feature a skater riding a skateboard on a ramp and performing tricks.

Surfing

guy surfing

Photo by Kanaka Menehune licensed CC BY-NC 2.0 

Surf’s up for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games... maybe. If surfing is added to the Olympics, there will be two events – one for 20 female surfers and another for 20 male surfers. The plan for now is to have surfers compete in the sea with natural waves. But there has been some talk about creating surf pools where competitors would catch waves in their bid for a medal.

What do you think?