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Unusual Olympics: What makes Tokyo 2020 different

Because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with several people having tested positive, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics have adopted some new rules and unusual practices. This stands as a reminder that, as the athletes strive for medals, everyone wins by ensuring the safety of all participants.

由于持续的新冠疫情,有些人员的新冠病毒检测结果呈阳性,2020 东京奥运会采用了一些新规则和不寻常的做法。这提醒我们,在运动员争夺奖牌的过程中,确保所有参与者的安全,就是每个人最大的胜利。

Winners will put on their own medals by themselves


On July 14, International Olympic Committee (IOC) chairman Thomas Bach said winners themselves will pick up their medals and put them on in order to prevent and control the COVID-19 pandemic. They will not shake hands or hug. Winners and awardees are required to wear masks.

7 月 14 日,国际奥委会 (IOC) 主席托马斯·巴赫 (Thomas Bach) 表示,获胜者将亲自拿起奖牌,佩戴在脖子上,以预防和控制新冠疫情。他们不会握手或拥抱。获奖者和获奖者必须戴口罩。

Athletes forbidden from engaging in some typical habits


In order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, some of the athletes' typical habits will be forbidden. For example, Liu Guoliang, president of the Chinese Table Tennis Association, said during an interview that players will not be allowed to touch the tables by hand or towel, or blow on the balls. These behaviors are subconscious habits for table tennis players during matches.


Liu Shiwen, Chinese table tennis player, admitted it was hard to adapt to the new rules at the beginning, but she has to follow them since they are implemented during Tokyo 2020.


Only three venues allow audiences, but digital measures adopted


Due to the spread of COVID-19, audiences are only allowed in three venues, which will hold track cycling and football matches. However, for those venues which have banned audience members, the IOC said they are considering using a system that can transfer the sound of applause to allow interaction.


Besides, according to Bach, screens with online audiences watching matches could be placed in venues, so supporters can cheer for their favorite teams. Audience members are encouraged to shoot videos and share them with the whole world. Athletes also are provided opportunities to communicate with their families and fans after matches.


New norm for media interviews


A new norm for media interviews has been instituted, keeping teams isolated in "bubbles" from the outside world over concerns for their health and safety amid the pandemic.


Two COVID-19 tests must be carried out within 96 hours before arriving in Japan. In the first 14 days after landing, media personnel cannot use public transport, and will only be allowed to go to the venues and business addresses submitted prior to their arrival. During their stay in Japan, they will be monitored through the GPS function of their smartphones.

所有人员必须在抵达日本前 96 小时内进行两次核酸检测。落地后14天内,媒体人员不得使用公共交通工具,只能前往预先提交的场地和商业场所。在日本逗留期间,他们将通过智能手机的 GPS 功能受到监控。

Renewable materials


Tokyo 2020 will be the first to build an Olympic Village using renewable materials, adopting the concepts of "reduce", "reuse" and "recycle" as one of the leading themes of the Olympic Games, reflected in many aspects of the event.


Paperboard beds stand out among the achievements. More than 100 podiums are made of waste household plastics. Gold, silver and bronze medals are made from recycled mobile phones.


The buildings at the Olympic Village Square, which are made of wood, will be disassembled and transported back to their "hometowns" for reuse after the Games.