The Games of the XXXI Olympiad were held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from August 5 to August 21, 2016. Over 11,000 athletes from the 207 member nations of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) competed in the 2016 Rio Games. This year marked the first time participants in the games from Kosovo, South Sudan, and the Refugee Olympic Team. The games included 28 Olympic sports and were held in 33 venues in the host city, and at five in São Paulo, Belo Horizonte, Salvador, Brasília, and Manaus.
With the refugee crisis that has millions of people displaced from their homes, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) allowed athletes to compete as Independent Olympians under the Olympic Flag. It is known as The Refugee Olympic Team (ROT) and out of 43 refugee athletes deemed potentially eligible, 10 were chosen to form the team.
The United States won 46 gold medals and with 121 medals overall, the U.S.A. topped the medal count. Great Britain came in second place and China finishing third.
The first ancient Olympic Games can be traced back to 776 BC. The ancient Games included running, long jump, shot put, javelin, boxing, pankration (an ancient sport combining boxing and wrestling) and equestrian events. The first Olympic champion was a cook named Coroebus. He won the only event–a 192-meter footrace called the stade. The games began as a way to honor Zeus and the other gods of Olympus.
The modern use of the Olympic Flame began in the 1936 Berlin Games. Around 3,330 runners brought the flame through Greece, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Hungary, Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Germany. Greek rituals also included torch relays, although this was not actually part of the Ancient Olympic Games. Today, the Olympic flame is lit in front of the ruins of the Temple of Hera in Olympia, Greece. The flame emphasizes the connection between the ancient games and the modern ones.
Gold medallist Anita Wlodarczyk of Poland, broke her own world record in the women's hammer, setting a new distance of 82.29m - the sixth time she has set a new record in the event.
Michael Phelps collected more Olympic medals than any person before. He has a total of 28 medals. Phelps also holds the all-time record for 23 Olympic gold medals, making him the most successful athlete of the Olympic Games. In the 2016 Olympic Games, he won 5 more gold and one silver medal. He has said that he is now retiring.
Ethiopian runner Almaz Ayana ran in the 10,000-meter woman`s race. Her time of 29 minutes, 17.45, shattered the record by 14.33 seconds. The 1993 record was held by China's Wang Junxia.
Usain Bolt from Jamaica had time to turn and smile during his 100 meter semi-final victory. He later won the final in a time of 9.81 seconds. It was his third 100 meter victory in three Olympic Games.
Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas stumbled as she came towards the finish and dove over the line in the 400 meter final. By diving over the finish line (which is legal) she edged the world champion Allyson Felix from America to win in 49.44 seconds.
Usain Bolt has won nine Olympic medals from three Olympic Games. He won in the 100 meter, the 200 meter and the 4x100 meter relay. It has become to be known as the "triple triple."
New Zealand's Nikki Hamblin and USA's Abbey D'Agostino collided on the track during the 5,000 meter race. The ladies gave up any chance of winning a medal by helping each other up to finish the race. They should receive a gold medal for true sportsmanship.
Katie Ledecky shattered her own world record in the 800-meter freestyle. The win gave her four gold medals. Three individual medals to go along with the silver she won as part of the 4x100 freestyle relay in Brazil.
Brianna Rollins won the gold, Nia Ali the silver and Kristi Castlin took the bronze. This was the first time in Olympic history that a nation won all three medals in the 100 meter race.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was at the Olympics closing ceremony as the Nintendo game character Super Mario offered a sneak preview at Tokyo's plans for the 2020 games.