Asian Games
Get Asian Games essential facts below. View Videos or join the Asian Games discussion. Add Asian Games to your topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.
Asian Games

Asian Games
MottoEver Onward
First event1951 Asian Games in New Delhi, India
Occur everyFour years
Last event2018 Asian Games in Jakarta-Palembang, Indonesia
Next event2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou, China
PurposeMulti-sport event for nations in Asia

The Asian Games, also known as Asiad,[1] is a continental multi-sport event held every four years among athletes from all over Asia. The Games were regulated by the Asian Games Federation (AGF) from the first Games in New Delhi, India, until the 1978 Games. Since the 1982 Games, they have been organized by the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA), after the breakup of the Asian Games Federation.[2] The Games are recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and are described as the second largest multi-sport event after the Olympic Games.[3][4]

There have been nine nations that have hosted the Asian Games. Forty-six nations have participated in the Games, including Israel, which was excluded from the Games after their last participation in 1974. The most recent games was held in Jakarta and Palembang, Indonesia from 18 August to 2 September 2018. The next games are scheduled to be held in Hangzhou, China from 10 to 25 September 2022.

Since 2010, host cities manage both the Asian Games and the Asian Para Games, the latter an event for athletes with physical conditions to compete with each other. The Asian Para Games are held immediately following the Asian Games, but the exclusion of Asian Para Games from any Asian Games host city contract means that both events will run independently of each other.


Prior formation

The Far Eastern Championship Games existed previous to the Asian Games, the former mooted in 1912 for a location set between the Japan, the Philippines, and China. The inaugural Far Eastern Games were held in Manila in 1913 with 6 participating nations. There were ten Far Eastern Games held by 1934. The second Sino-Japanese War in 1934, and Japan's insistence on including the Manchu Empire as a competitor nation in the Games, brought China to announce its withdrawal from participation. The Far Eastern Games scheduled for 1938 were cancelled. The organization was discontinued.[5]


After World War II, sovereignty came to several areas of Asia. Many of these countries sought to exhibit Asian prowess without violence. At the London 1948 Summer Olympics, a conversation started amongst China and the Philippines to restore the idea of the Far Eastern Games. Guru Dutt Sondhi, the Indian International Olympic Committee representative, believed that the restoration of the Far Eastern Games would sufficiently display the spirit of unity and level of achievement taking place in Asian sports. He proposed the idea of a new competition  - which came to be the Asian Games. The Asian Athletic Federation would eventually be formed. A preparatory committee was set up to draft the charter for this new body. On 13 February 1949, the Asian Athletic Federation was formally inaugurated in and New Delhi, announced as the inaugural host city to be held in 1950.[6][7]

Crisis, reorganisation, expansion

The first Asian Games opening ceremony

In 1962, the Games were hit by several crises. The host country Indonesia, refused to permit the participation of Israel and Taiwan due to political recognition issues. The IOC would terminate its sponsorship of the Games and terminated Indonesia membership in the IOC.[8] The Asian Football Confederation (AFC),[9] International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) and International Weightlifting Federation (IWF), also removed their recognition of the Games.[10][11]

South Korea renounced its plan to host the 1970 Asian Games on the grounds of a national security crisis; the main reason was due to a financial crisis. The previous host, Thailand, would host the Games in Bangkok using funds transferred from South Korea.[12] Japan was asked to host but declined the opportunity as they were already committed to Expo '70 in Osaka.[13] This edition marked the Games' inaugural television broadcasting, world-wide.[14] In Tehran, in 1974, the Games formally recognized the participation of China, North Korea and Mongolia. Israel was allowed to participate despite the opposition from the Arab world, while Taiwan was permitted to continue taking part (as "Chinese Taipei") although its status was abolished in general meeting on 16 November 1973 by Games Federation.[15]

Prior to the 1978 Games, Pakistan retracted its plan to host the 1975 Games due to a financial crisis and political issues.[16] Thailand offer to host and the Games were held in Bangkok. As in 1962, Taiwan and Israel were refused the participation by Games Federation, amid political issues and security fears.[17] Several governing bodies protested the ban. The IAAF threatened to bar the participating athletes from the 1980 Summer Olympics.[18] Several nations withdraw prior to the Games opening.[19]

These events led the National Olympic Committees in Asia to revise the constitution of the Asian Games Federation. The Olympic Council of Asia was created in November 1981, excluding Israel.[20] India was scheduled to host in 1982 and the OCA decided not to drop the old AGF timetable. The OCA formally started to supervise the Games with the South Korea 1986 Asian Games.[21] In the succeeding Games, Taiwan (Republic of China) was re-admitted, under pressure by the People's Republic of China to compete as Chinese Taipei.[22]

In 1994, the Games included the inaugural participation of the former republics of the Soviet Union: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. It was the inaugural Games held in a host country outside its capital city.[23] However, Iraq was suspended from the Games due to the 1990 Persian Gulf War. North Korea boycotted the Games due to political issues. It was marred during the Games' opening ceremony by the death of Nareshkumar Adhikari, the chief of the Nepalese delegation.[24]

The 1998 Games marked the fourth time the Games were held in Bangkok, Thailand. The opening ceremony was on 6 December; the previous three were on 9 December. King Bhumibol Adulyadej opened the Games; the closing ceremony was on 20 December (the same date as all the previous games hosted by Thailand).


The Asian Games Movement uses symbols to represent the ideals embodied in the Asian Games charter. The Asian Games motto is "Ever Onward" which was designed and proposed by Guru Dutt Sondhi upon the creation of the Asian Games Federation in 1949. The Asian Games symbol is a bright sun in red with 16 rays and a white circle in the middle of its disc which represents the ever glimmering and warm spirit of the Asian people.


Since the 1982 Asian Games in New Delhi, India, the Asian Games have had a mascot, usually an animal native to the area or occasionally human figures representing the cultural heritage.


All 45 members affiliated to the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) are eligible to participate in the Games.

According to membership in the OCA, transcontinental Kazakhstan participates in the Asian Games but Egypt does not as a country with Asian minor region in Sinai, participating in the African Games instead. Various countries participating in the European Games rather than the Asian Games whose major geographical parts located in Asian continent: Turkey and Russia/Soviet Union, almost completely in Asia: Azerbaijan and Georgia, wholly in Asia: Cyprus, Armenia, and Israel.

In history, 46 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) have sent competitors to the Games. Israel has been excluded from the Games since 1976, the reason cited as being due to security reasons.[25] Israel requested to participate in the 1982 Games, but the request was rejected by the organizers due to the Munich massacre.[26] Israel is now a member of the European Olympic Committees (EOC) and competes at the European Games.

Taiwan, Palestine, Hong Kong, and Macau participate in the Asian Games according to membership in OCA. Due to its continuing ambiguous political status, Taiwan participates in the Games under the flag of Chinese Taipei since 1990. Macau NOC is allowed to compete as one of the NOCs in Asian Games, despite not being recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for participation in the Olympic Games.

In 2007, the President of OCA, Sheikh Ahmed Al-Fahad Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah, rejected the proposal to allow Australia to participate in the Games. He stated that while Australia would add good value to the Asian Games, it would be unfair to the Oceania National Olympic Committees (ONOC).[27] Being members of ONOC, Australia and New Zealand participates in Pacific Games since 2015. This motion was mooted again in 2017 after Australia's participation in the 2017 Asian Winter Games as they are in discussions to become a full Asian Games member from 2022 or 2026.[28] However, the Australian Olympic Committee announced that Australia would be allowed a small contingent of athletes for the 2022 Games, as long as the qualification for Summer Olympics events such as basketball and volleyball are through Asia.[29]

There are only seven countries, namely India, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Singapore and Thailand that have competed in all editions of the games.

List of Asian Games

Edition Year Host city(ies) Host country Opened by Nations Competitors Sports Events Top-ranked team Ref.
I 1951 New Delhi  India President Rajendra Prasad 4 March 11 March 11 489 6 57  Japan (JPN) [30]
II 1954 Manila  Philippines President Ramon Magsaysay 1 May 9 May 18 970 8 76  Japan (JPN) [31]
III 1958 Tokyo  Japan Emperor Hirohito 24 May 1 June 16 1,820 13 97  Japan (JPN) [32]
IV 1962 Jakarta  Indonesia President Sukarno 24 August 4 September 12 1,460 13 88  Japan (JPN) [33]
V 1966 Bangkok  Thailand King Bhumibol Adulyadej 16 1,945 14 143  Japan (JPN) [34]
VI 1970 Bangkok  Thailand King Bhumibol Adulyadej 16 2,400 13 135  Japan (JPN) [35]
VII 1974 Tehran  Iran Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi 19 3,010 16 202  Japan (JPN) [36]
VIII 1978 Bangkok  Thailand King Bhumibol Adulyadej 19 3,842 19 201  Japan (JPN) [37]
IX 1982 New Delhi  India President Zail Singh 23 3,411 21 147  China (CHN) [38]
X 1986 Seoul President Chun Doo-hwan 22 4,839 25 270  China (CHN) [39]
XI 1990 Beijing  China President Yang Shangkun 36 6,122 27 310  China (CHN) [40]
XII 1994 Hiroshima  Japan Emperor Akihito 42 6,828 34 338  China (CHN) [41]
XIII 1998 Bangkok  Thailand King Bhumibol Adulyadej 41 6,554 36 377  China (CHN) [42]
XIV 2002 Busan  South Korea President Kim Dae-jung 44 7,711 38 419  China (CHN) [43]
XV 2006 Doha  Qatar Emir 45 9,520 39 424  China (CHN) [44]
XVI 2010 Guangzhou  China Premier Wen Jiabao 45 9,704 42 476  China (CHN) [45]
XVII 2014 Incheon  South Korea President Park Geun-hye 45 9,501 36 439  China (CHN) [46]
XVIII 2018  Indonesia President Joko Widodo 45 11,300 40 465  China (CHN) [47]
XIX 2022 Hangzhou  China TBA Future event [48]
XX 2026  Japan TBA Future event
XXI 2030 Doha  Qatar TBA Future event
XXII 2034 Riyadh  Saudi Arabia TBA Future event


The average for the edition of events by the edition of the Asian Games is of nearly 260 events with 24 sports by edition. Fifty-one sports, spanning 39 different disciplines and nearly 400 events, have been part of the Asian Games program at one point or another, including the 2018 Games in Indonesia. The edition where the largest number of events was the Guangzhou 2010 Games, where 476 events in 42 sports were disputed. The number of events varies according to edition and the demands of the local organizing committee, along with those of the host country. It was established in 2011, that the Games program would respect the eventual changes to the Olympic Games program along with this, eight extremely popular sports in Asia are in the program, plus up to 7 chosen by the local organization.[49][50]

Sport Years
Archery Since 1978
Athletics All
Badminton Since 1962
Baseball Since 1994
Basketball All
Board games 2006-2010
Bodybuilding 2002-2006
Bowling 1978, 1986, since 1994
Boxing Since 1954
Canoeing Since 1986
Contract bridge 2018 only
Cricket 2010-2014, 2022
Cue sports 1998-2010
Cycling 1951, since 1958
Dancesport 2010 only
Dragon boat 2010 and 2018
Diving All
Equestrian 1982-1986, since 1994
Fencing 1974-1978, since 1986
Field hockey Since 1958
Football All
Golf Since 1982
Gymnastics Since 1974
Handball Since 1982
Judo Since 1986
Kabaddi Since 1990
Sport Years
Karate Since 1994
Martial art sports 2018 only
Paragliding 2018 only
Pencak silat 2018 only
Modern pentathlon 1994, 2002, since 2010
Roller sports 2010 and 2018
Rowing Since 1982
Rugby sevens Since 1998
Sailing 1970, since 1978
Sepak takraw Since 1990
Shooting Since 1954
Sport climbing 2018 only
Softball since 1990
Soft tennis since 1990
Squash since 1998
Swimming All
Synchronized swimming Since 1994
Table tennis 1958-1966, since 1974
Taekwondo 1986, since 1994
Tennis 1958-1966, since 1974
Triathlon Since 2006
Volleyball Since 1958
Water polo All
Weightlifting 1951-1958, since 1966
Wrestling Since 1954
Wushu Since 1990


Sport Disciplines Years
Aquatics Diving All
Swimming All
Synchronized Swimming Since 1994
Water polo All
Baseball Baseball Since 1994
Softball Since 1990
Basketball Basketball All
3x3 basketball since 2018
Board games Chess 2006-2010
Go 2010
Xiangqi 2010
Canoeing Slalom canoeing Since 2010
Sprint canoeing Since 1990
Traditional boat race 2010 and 2018
Cycling BMX racing Since 2010
Mountain biking 1998-2002, since 2010
Road cycling 1951, since 1958
Track cycling 1951, 1958, since 1966
Equestrian Dressage 1986, since 1994
Endurance 2006 only
Eventing 1982-1986, since 1998
Jumping 1982-1986, since 1994
Tent pegging 1982 only
Gymnastics Artistic gymnastics Since 1974
Rhythmic gymnastics Since 1994
Trampoline Since 2006
Martial art sports Jujitsu Since 2018
Kurash Since 2018
Pencak Silat 2018 only
Sambo 2018 only
Mechanical sports Jetski 2018 only
Paragliding Paragliding 2018 only
Roller sports Artistic roller skating 2010 only
Roller speed skating 2010 and 2018
Skateboarding 2018 only
Rugby union Rugby union 1998-2002
Rugby sevens Since 1998
Tennis Tennis 1958-1966, since 1974
Soft tennis Since 1994
Volleyball Volleyball Since 1958
Nine-a-side volleyball 1958-1962
Beach volleyball Since 1998
Wushu Taolu Since 1990
Sanda Men: Since 1998

Women: Since 2010

Medal count

Of the 46 National Olympic Committees participating throughout the history of the Games, 43 nations have won at least a single medal in the competition, leaving three nations: Bhutan, Maldives and Timor-Leste yet to win a single medal. 38 nations have won at least one gold medal (only Japan and India have done so at every Asian Games), while Japan and China became the only two nations in history to emerge as overall champions.[51]

1 China (CHN)14739947203187
2 Japan (JPN)103210379853054
3 South Korea (KOR)7456638272235
4 Iran (IRI)179181197557
5 India (IND)155201316672
6 Kazakhstan (KAZ)155158244557
7 Thailand (THA)132175279586
8 North Korea (PRK)110144179433
9 Chinese Taipei (TPE)99144276519
10 Indonesia (INA)91120235446
Totals (10 nations)41713817425812246

Most valuable player award

The most valuable player (MVP) award was introduced since 1998 Games in Bangkok, Thailand. Below is the list of winners:

Centennial Festival

On 8 November 2012, the OCA decided at its 31st General Assembly in Macau to create a special multi-sport event called Asian Games Centennial Festival in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Oriental Games (later became Far Eastern Championship Games).[57] OCA awarded the Philippines the hosting rights as it was also the host 100 years previous. The event was originally scheduled to be held in Boracay Island, Malay, Aklan on 27 to 29 November 2013 but due to the events surrounding Typhoon Haiyan, it was moved to January 2014.[58]

See also


  1. ^ China's Great Leap: The Beijing Games and Olympian Human Rights Challenges. Seven Stories. 4 January 2011. p. 51. ISBN 9781583228432. asian games also known as asiad.
  2. ^ "OCA History". OCA. Archived from the original on 22 May 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  3. ^ "Asian Games Taps Three-Time Olympic Sportscaster For New Sports Radio Talk Show". Sports Biz Asia. 8 February 2010. Archived from the original on 27 November 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  4. ^ "Fully renovated basketball arena ready for Asian Games". Sports City. 22 July 2009. Archived from the original on 13 June 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  5. ^ "Far Eastern Championship Games". Olympic Council of Asia. Archived from the original on 26 February 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  6. ^ ",". Archived from the original on 7 September 2013. Retrieved 2010.
  7. ^ ":? ". Sina. 4 August 2010. Archived from the original on 2 December 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  8. ^ "Track: Asian Games Dropped By Olympics". Daytona Beach. 23 August 1962. Retrieved 2010.
  9. ^ "?4? 1962?". Archived from the original on 3 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  10. ^ "Penalty Dealt to Indonesia". Spokane Daily Chronicles. 13 September 1962. Retrieved 2010.
  11. ^ "Warning". The Age. 30 August 1962. Retrieved 2010.
  12. ^ " 1970". Archived from the original on 3 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  13. ^ "Thailand's Sporting Spirit". Pattaya Mail Sports. Archived from the original on 17 June 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  14. ^ " 1970". data.sports.163. Archived from the original on 3 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  15. ^ " 1974?". Archived from the original on 3 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  16. ^ "?8? 1978". Archived from the original on 3 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  17. ^ "Asian Games Federation says no to Israel". Anchorage Daily News. 3 June 1978. Retrieved 2010.
  18. ^ "New Israeli rejection forces Asian athletes to risk Olympic hope". The Montreal Gazette. 22 November 1978. Retrieved 2010.
  19. ^ "Indonesia, Hong Kong protest ban on Israel". St. Petersburg Times. 4 December 1978. Retrieved 2010.
  20. ^ "Israelis facing Asian ban". Ottawa Citizen. 10 December 1981. Retrieved 2010.
  21. ^ "Olympics". The Montreal Gazette. 28 November 1981. Retrieved 2010.
  22. ^ "China welcomes Taiwan's AG trip". Manila Standard. 16 July 1988. Retrieved 2010.
  23. ^ "?12? 1994". Archived from the original on 2 December 2010. Retrieved 2010.
  24. ^ "Let the Games Begin". New Straits Times. 3 October 1994. Retrieved 2010.
  25. ^ "Asian Games ban Israel". St. Petersburg Times. 26 July 1976. Retrieved 2007.
  26. ^ "Israel not invited to Asian Games". Lakeland Ledger. 26 May 1982. Retrieved 2007.[dead link]
  27. ^ "No place for Australia in Asian Games". The Sydney Morning Herald. 17 April 2007. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 2010.
  28. ^ Harper, Tony (21 February 2017). "Australia in discussions to take part in Asian Games from 2022". Fox Sports. Archived from the original on 4 May 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  29. ^ "Oceania nations allowed small quota of athletes at 2022 Asian Games". The Indian Express. Reuters. 21 September 2017. Archived from the original on 24 September 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  30. ^ "1st AG New Delhi 1951". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  31. ^ "2nd AG Manila 1954". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  32. ^ "3rd AG Tokyo 1958". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  33. ^ "4th AG Jakarta 1962". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  34. ^ "5th AG Bangkok 1966". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  35. ^ "6th AG Bangkok 1970". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  36. ^ "7th AG Tehran 1974". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  37. ^ "8th AG Bangkok 1978". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  38. ^ "9th AG New Delhi 1982". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  39. ^ "10th AG Seoul 1986". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  40. ^ "11th AG Beijing 1990". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  41. ^ "12th AG Hiroshima 1994". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  42. ^ "13th AG Bangkok 1998". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  43. ^ "14th AG Busan 2002". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2002.
  44. ^ "15th AG Doha 2006". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2006.
  45. ^ "16th AG Guangzhou 2010". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  46. ^ "17th AG Incheon 2014". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2014.
  47. ^ "18th AG Jakarta-Palembang 2018". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2014.
  48. ^ "19th AG Hangzhou 2022". OCA. Archived from the original on 11 September 2018. Retrieved 2015.
  49. ^ "Incheon 2014 issues delayed". Olympic Council of Asia. 13 November 2010. Archived from the original on 27 July 2011. Retrieved 2010.
  50. ^ "Incheon Asian Games to Feature 36 Sports". The Chosun Ilbo. 10 December 2010. Archived from the original on 29 September 2018. Retrieved 2010.
  51. ^ "Asian Summer Games Medal Count". Olympic Council of Asia. Archived from the original on 8 September 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  52. ^ a b "Outstanding Japanese athletes in Asian Games". 21 January 2010. Archived from the original on 9 September 2017. Retrieved 2011.
  53. ^ "S Korean Swimmer Park Named MVP". 16 December 2006. Archived from the original on 20 February 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  54. ^ "Lin Dan voted Asian Games MVP". Jakarta Post. 28 November 2010. Archived from the original on 1 January 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  55. ^ "Samsung MVP Award: 2014 MVP is Kosuke Hagino of Japan". The Korea Herald. 4 October 2014. Archived from the original on 4 October 2014. Retrieved 2014.
  56. ^ "Teenage swimmer Ikee named 2018 Asian Games' "Most Valuable Player" as event draws to a close". inside the games. 2 September 2018. Archived from the original on 2 September 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  57. ^ "OCA General Assembly opens in Macau". OCA. Archived from the original on 8 January 2014. Retrieved 2012.
  58. ^ "Philippines to host 2013 Centennial Asian Games". Inquirer Sports. Archived from the original on 19 June 2013. Retrieved 2013.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Music Scenes