Encyclopedia of Sport: Every sport from around the world

Heptathlon

The track and field event of the heptathlon is comprised of seven events. The name comes from the Greek word hepta which means seven and athlon which means contest. The women's heptathlon is an event at the Olympic Games.

The participants in the heptathlon are called a heptathletes. There is a women’s and men’s heptathlon, which comprise a different set of seven events. The men’s heptathlon is usually conducted indoors, while the women’s heptathlon is done outdoors. The first four events are completed on the first day and the remaining three are done on the second day.

The women’s heptathlon was introduced in the 1980s, first appearing in the Olympics in 1984. The event consists of the 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200m sprint, long jump, javelin throw, and 800m run.

100m sprint race sprint races are part of the heptathlon

The men’s heptathlon consists of these events: 60m sprint, long jump, high jump, 60m hurdles, pole vault, and 1000 meters.

Both versions have more or less the same scoring system. Each participant receives a score based on their performance in each event, with the winner the athlete with the highest total score at the end of the competition.

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