Overview

modern pentathlon


'modern pentathlon' can also refer to...

 

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Sport and Leisure

GO

Show Summary Details

Quick Reference

A multi-discipline competitive sport, comprising five elements: shooting, fencing, swimming, horse-riding, and cross-country running. The sport was introduced in the Olympic Games programme in 1912, and its military pedigree ensured that it was not until 1952 that the event was won by a competitor without any military background: Lars Hall, a Swedish carpenter, broke that monopoly. The Olympic event was also dominated by men, until women first competed at the 2000 Sydney Games. East European countries (Hungary, the former Soviet Union, Poland, and Russia) have been dominant medal winners, with Sweden a close second to Hungary in the overall Olympic medal table. UK journalist Kevin Mitchell captures the cultural quirkiness of the event: ‘It is quintessentially exotic, peopled by enthusiasts who toil anonymously in five disciplines that are not remotely related to each other yet demand utter dedication.’ In fact, the disciplines were of course interrelated in the event's historical origins, being the skills that could be required of a cavalry courier. Bronze medallist in the event at Montreal in 1976, Czech Jan Bartu, performance director of the UK modern pentathlon team in 2008, highlighted the virtues of the sport:it is the most versatile sport in the Olympics—and it takes tremendous dedication to get to this level. It is a massive undertaking to train across five different sports. Not many can do it. There are maybe 80 or 90 competing at this World Cup level, 70 or so in the women's. They are all tremendous athletes.

it is the most versatile sport in the Olympics—and it takes tremendous dedication to get to this level. It is a massive undertaking to train across five different sports. Not many can do it. There are maybe 80 or 90 competing at this World Cup level, 70 or so in the women's. They are all tremendous athletes.

Subjects: Sport and Leisure.


Reference entries

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.