Olympic Gold Medalist Critical of ‘Enhanced’ Track Technology at Tokyo Olympics 2020

Published 08/16/2021, 9:06 AM EDT
Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Athletics – Women’s 4 x 400m Relay – Final – Olympic Stadium, Tokyo, Japan – August 7, 2021. Allyson Felix of the United States in action REUTERS/Aleksandra Szmigiel


Tokyo Olympics 2020 saw a lot of technological advances in different sports. Track and field was one highlight as significant improvement in performances was encountered.

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The mega-events field enhanced the speed and ensured the safety of athletes. Sports like archery too had technological tools to access the heartbeat of athletes, even fans could view the counts on their TV screens. Some countries also used technology to help their athletes perform effectively. Great Britain athletes swallowed Bluetooth pills before the games to adapt to the heat conditions in Japan.

The Chinese team wore 3D-printed gymnastics leotards and boxing shoes to ensure the safety of the athletes. At the mega games, the host nation also designed a 3D athlete tracking system to help the coaches analyze athletes’ form.

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Former track and field athlete Edwin Moses commented on the changes in track and field

The new tracks in Tokyo were a success, as it has already produced new Olympic records. However, there has still been a controversy about the shocking results because of technological advancement.

Olympic gold medalist Edwin Moses in conversation with Barbados Today talked about the changes in the track and field. Edwin said, “I’ve seen at least three articles on that,” Moses said. “I think that at some point they’re going to have to deal with the shift in paradigm because of technology issues.” 

Edwin retired from track and field in 1988. Notably, Moses has a glory of two Olympic gold medals and a record of 107 consecutive wins in the finals of the 400m race.

American further added, “In track, there’s been a lot of debate I guess over the last two to three years about that, so I’m not in tune with what they go through. I’m sure they’ll revisit it.”

Technological changes in track and field at Tokyo Olympics 2020

Athletes stunningly broke and created new records in the track and field sport in Tokyo. The spotlight was on the Jamaican sprinter Elaine Thompson as she broke a 33-year-old record in the 100-meter event.

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Interestingly, the field was made by Mondo, a company that has supplied for 12 Olympic games. The surface of the Tokyo Olympics field is three-dimensional. It comprises rubber granules, specially designed with a polymeric system.

Whereas the top layer is made of Modotrach, and it’s added to the semi-vulcanized compound. The vulcanization process ensures the molecular bond between the granules and surrounding matter, hence creating a compact layer.

In the end, the idea was to increase the speed and deliver a smooth path. With the change in the technology of shoes, tracks, and even the costume of athletes, Tokyo was the most advanced game in history.

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Shreya Verma

212 articles

Shreya Verma is an NBA and Tennis Author at EssentiallySports. A graduate of Political Science, Shreya comes from a strong sports background. A professional 10m air pistol shooter, Shreya is also a tennis enthusiast.

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