Kids’ Athletics Day Date in the current year: May 7, 2024

Kids’ Athletics Day Kids’ Athletics Day is observed on May 7 every year. It was created by World Athletics – the international governing body for the sport of athletics – to get children and young people active and encourage them to participate in athletics.

Athletics is a group of sporting events that involves competitive running, walking, jumping, and throwing. The history of organized athletic competitions can be traced back to the original Olympic Games in Ancient Greece. Modern athletics began to develop in the late 18th century. The first national body for the sport of athletics, the Amateur Athletic Association, was established in England in 1880.

In 1912, representatives from national athletics federations established the International Amateur Athletic Federation to govern the sport of athletics at the international level. The organization was subsequently renamed the International Association of Athletics Federations in 2011 and rebranded as World Athletics in 2019.

In 1996, World Athletics (then still known as the International Amateur Athletic Federation) launched World Athletics Day to celebrate the sport of athletics and promote its development at sports venues managed by IAAF member federations. The inaugural celebration was held on May 15. In the subsequent years, World Athletics Day was celebrated on different dates in May that were annually announced by the IAAF.

The celebration was originally targeted at young members of athletics clubs affiliated with IAAF member federations. However, in 2006, IAAF president Lamine Diack announced that World Athletics Day events would now also be held at schools to get children interested in athletics and use the power of athletics to inspire them.

In 2022, World Athletics Day was relaunched as Kids’ Athletics Day, and its date was fixed for May 7. Its main goal is to promote Kids’ Athletics, a grassroots development program for children and adolescents aged between 4 and 14. The program helps its participants develop movements skills through games and other fun activities, as well as introduces children to athletics disciplines and competitive athletics. Since its inception in 2002, Kids’ Athletics has reached an estimated audience of more than 13 million children and young people around the globe.

World Athletics member federations, schools, clubs, community groups, and other stakeholders mark Kids’ Athletics Day with various fun athletics-type events and activities for children and young people. They include competitions and challenges, showcases, races, and more. These events and activities focus on inspiring children and adolescents to become more active, work on developing their skills and confidence, and connect with sports to live a healthier and happier life.

Kids’ Athletics Day has a new theme every year. For example, ahead of the 2024 Kids’ Athletics Day, World Athletics launched the World Mile Challenge to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Roger Bannister’s historic record: on May 6, 1954, he became the first athlete to finish a mile run in less than four minutes. The focus of the challenge was on running, jogging, or walking a mile.

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