(Last Updated on : 12/09/2012)
India has been participating in the Olympic Games in an organised manner since 1928 and has done reasonably well so far. Indian athletes participated in the Olympics for the first time in the year 1948, when a team of 8 Indian athletes
took part in various track and field events. Among the 8 athletes, 6 were men and 2 were women. Though Indian athletes have participated in all Olympic events after that, they have not been considered very successful, though there has been some measure of success in different track and field events.
So far, six Indian athletes have reached the Olympic finals in their respective events. Apart from them, the Indian 4x400 Women`s relay team has also reached the finals of their event in Olympics. Among individual players, the first one to win an Olympic medal for India was Norman Pritchard, who went to the Olympics in 1900, when India was under British rule. He won two silver medals in sprint and hurdles in the 1900 Olympic Games. In 1948 London Olympics, Henry Rebello went to the finals of Triple Jump
. After him, Milkha Singh
got the fourth place in 400 metres, in the 1960 Rome Olympic Games. In the next Olympic Games, in Tokyo in 1964, Gurbachan Singh Randhawa was placed in the fifth position 100 m hurdles. After a gap of two Olympic Games, Sriram Singh
got the seventh place in 800m in the 1976 Montreal Olympics.
After Sriram Singh`s performance in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, the famous Indian women sprinter, P. T Usha
placed fourth in the 400m hurdles in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. Though she tried her best, she unfortunately lost her bronze by 1/100th of a second. The 4 member Indian Women`s relay team for 400m, comprising P. T. Usha, Manathoor Devasia Valsamma
, Vandana Rao, and Shiny Abraham
got the seventh place, in the same year. However, after that, no other Indian Athletes in Olympics could get into the finals of their events, so far.
Indian Athletics has seen a lot of changes and ups and down during its journey, so far. The history of Indian Athletics
dates back to the Vedic culture
, when Indian people used to take part in various track and field events. With due course of time, Indian athletes
started playing modern day Athletics events in India like Long Jump
, High Jump
, Discus Throw
, Javelin Throw
, distance running etc.
After Independence, the organisation work of Indian Athletics started. Various Athletics associations started to be established in India for the management of Indian Athletics
. The associations in term established various Indian Athletics training centers
that helped in bringing up new talents from the grass route level. The Sports Authority of India
(SAI) is one such training center that is aimed at ensuring effective and optimum utilization of various sports facilities in India. The Indian Athletics training centers also teaches the Indian Athletes about various rules and terms of Athletics
Apart from training and coaching budding Indian athletes, Indian Athletics associations also organise various athletic meets in India
that helps Indian athletes gain recognition on the national stage. Indian athletes have been participating in the Olympic Games since 1948; however, the performance of Indian Athletes in Olympics is not very mentionable, till now.