Which sports are Included?

The final make-up of the sports on the Commonwealth Games program is determined by the host nation. There are currently ten core sports that are compulsory, including the three sports that have been on every Commonwealth Games program: Boxing, Athletics and Swimming. The host city can then include up to an additional seven sports from a list of optional sports/disciplines.

There is also a list of four core Para-Sports for elite athletes with a disability, which the host city must include (Athletics, Aquatics (Swimming), Lawn Bowls, Power Lifting). They can then include events from up to an additional 3 listed optional Para-Sports but not exceeding 20 events, which must be fully integrated into the overall Sports Program.

Number of Sports

The number of sports at each Games has increased steadily over the years, currently the number of sports is required to be 17. At the first Commonwealth Games, there were only 6 sports (1930, 1934), then 7 (1938), 10 (1950), 9 (1954-74), 10 (1978-94), 15 (1998) , 17 (2002) and 16 (2006). From 2012 onwards there have been 17 sports. Only three sports have been on every Games program: Boxing, Athletics and Swimming.

Gymnastics ImageWhich Sports

As well as many Olympic Sports, the Games also include some sports that are played predominantly in Commonwealth countries, such as lawn bowls and netball.

What is a sport?

At the Commonwealth and Olympic Games, Aquatics is classed as the sport and Diving, Swimming and Synchronized Swimming are all disciplines. The same applies to Cycling, with disciplines of Track, Road and Mountain Bike. Gymnastics – Artistic and Rhythmic, and Shooting – Clay Target, Full Bore, Small Bore and Pistol also have disciplines within their sports.

Team Sports

In an effort to modernise the Games, in Malaysia 1998 the Commonwealth Games Federation decided to include team sports for the first time. In 1998 there were four team sports, Cricket, Hockey, Netball, and Rugby 7s. In 2002 there was three (netball, hockey, rugby 7s) and in 2006 there are four (Basketball added). Current rules allow a maximum of four team sports to be included in the overall sports program.

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