You are here: HOME > Feature Topics

Feature Topics

Return to list

Japan: a global powerhouse for sport technology

During the games, athletes compete against one another, staying true to the Games’ motto “faster, higher, stronger” (which comes from Latin “citius, altius, fortius”). Although it may not be evident to most viewers, there is also intense competition between different technologies at the games: equipment, athletic gear, arena facilities, and measuring/timing devices, all of which has been developed in order to augment athletes’ performances.
In addition, other brand-new non-sports technologies are introduced for the benefit of audiences, both on the television and for those present at the arenas, and to aid organization and logistics at the games.

Japanese technologies have significantly contributed to many of the Olympic Games. Although the 2016 Summer Olympics have just begun, new technologies developed in Japan and intended for use at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo have already been announced: while some of these are still in development and have only been demonstrated, others have already been released on a commercial basis*.

In this article, we introduce interesting and unique Japanese technologies that play an important role in the Olympic Games.

Vol.1 “Made in Japan”: Recognized Globally, Officially Approved for the Olympics
"There are various Japanese-made technological “masterpieces,” which play a vital role in many Olympic events; indeed, Japan is one of the foremost powers in the design and development of sports technology."

Vol.2 1964 Changed Everything
"The result of this approach was striking, and the 1964 Summer Olympics inspired the innovation of various technologies, not just those directly related to the Games. Some of these are now global or de facto standards and instantly recognizable throughout the world, ... The Games was not just a sporting event, but it also turned out to be similar to an international trade fair of leading-edge technology. "

Vol.3 Next-Generation Technologies That Will be Unveiled at Tokyo 2020
"Inspired by the success of 1964, a number of astonishing technologies are now under development for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo."

*Currently, the Japanese Cabinet Office is promoting a research and development initiative, which aims to produce new technologies for 2020 and beyond. The technologies and products introduced in this article are a part of the initiative, but are being developed alongside other ongoing research projects.