History of Beach Volleyball in the Olympic Games

The sport of beach volleyball has been recently introduced to the Olympic Games. It is interesting to know that the popularity of beach volleyball is increasing year after year. These days, more and more people across the world take an interest in beach volleyball. Obviously, the sport of beach volleyball develops very quickly. In this article, we are going to provide some insight into the history of beach volleyball in the Olympic Games and highlight the most important its moments.

The history of beach volleyball in the Olympic Games began in 1996. Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games are known as the first games with beach volleyball. Today, winning the Olympic Games is considered to be the best possible achievement in the sport of beach volleyball.

Obviously, winning the gold in the Olympic Games is more prestigious than winning the gold either in the World Championships or the World Tour of the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB). That’s why the main objective of so many men’s and women’s beach volleyball teams is to win the gold medal in the Olympic Games.

Despite the fact that beach volleyball has become the Olympic sport recently, the history of beach volleyball in the Olympic Games is very interesting and has a lot of unforgettable moments. The United States and Brazil are two countries which have demonstrated the best results in beach volleyball during the Olympic Games.

If we analyze the history of beach volleyball carefully we will see that US teams have always dominated and won at least one gold medal in the Olympic Games. Beach volleyball fans also know that Brazil men’s and women’s beach volleyball teams win either gold or silver medals in every Olympic Games as well.

Statistics of Olympic Medalists in Beach Volleyball

Totally, five Olympic Games with beach volleyball took place – Atlanta (1996), Sydney (2000), Athens (2004), Beijing (2008) and London (2012). The statistics shows that the United States has won 9 Olympic medals (6 gold medals, 2 silver medals and 1 bronze medal); Brazil has won 11 Olympic medals (2 gold medals, 6 silver medals and 3 bronze medals); Australia has won 2 Olympic medals (1 gold medal and 1 bronze medal); Germany has won 2 Olympic medals (1 gold medal and 1 bronze medal); China has won 2 Olympic medals (1 silver medal and 1 bronze medal); Spain has won 1 Olympic medal (1 silver medal); Canada has won 1 Olympic medal (1 bronze medal); Latvia has won 1 Olympic medal (1 bronze medal); Switzerland has won 1 Olympic medal (1 bronze medal).

Olympic Games in Atlanta 1996

Women’s teams from Brazil demonstrated excellent results in the first Olympic Games with beach volleyball. Teams (24 men’s teams and 18 women’s teams) from 42 countries participated in the Olympic beach volleyball tournament. Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games took place in a 10,000-seat stadium. The Olympic beach volleyball tournament united 107,000 spectators from across the world.

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Women’s Medalists of Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games

Jackie Silva and Sandra Pires from Brazil, Mônica Rodrigues and Adriana Samuel from Brazil and Natalie Cook and Kerri-Ann Pottharst from Australia won the women’s gold, silver and bronze medal in Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games respectively.

Men’s Medalists of Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games

In the men’s Olympic competition the leaders were beach volleyball teams from the United States. Karch Kiraly and Kent Steffes from USA, Mike Dodd and Mike Witmarsh from USA and John Child and Mark Heese from Canada won men’s gold, silver and bronze medals in these Olympic Games respectively.

Olympic Games in Sydney 2000

The next Olympic Games took place in Sydney in 2000. The beach volleyball competition took place in a large stadium equipped with 10,000 seats and the most up-to-date facilities. Teams (24 men’s teams and 24 women’s teams) from 50 countries participated in Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Both players and fans enjoyed the Olympic beach volleyball competition 2000.

It is worth noting that both men’s and women’s teams from Brazil demonstrated the best results in this Olympic beach volleyball tournament. For the first time in the history of beach volleyball in the Olympic Games, Australia won the women’s gold medal.

Women’s Medalists of Sydney 2000 Olympic Games

Australia won the gold medal in Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Women’s beach volleyball team from Australia consisted of two legendary players – Natalie Cook and Kerri-Ann Pottharst. Adriana Behar and Shelda from Brazil and Sandra Pires and Adriana Samuel from Brazil won women’s silver and bronze medals.

Men’s Medalists of Sydney 2000 Olympic Games

The United States continued to dominate in the men’s Olympic beach volleyball competition. Dain Blanton and Eric Fonoimoana from the USA won the gold medal. Zé Marco and Ricardo from Brazil and Jörg Ahmann and Axel Hager from Germany won silver and bronze medals in this Olympic tournament respectively.

Olympic Games in Athens 2004

Athens 2004 Olympic Games united beach volleyball teams from 60 countries (24 men’s teams and 24 women’s teams). It is worth noting that the Olympic beach volleyball competition was organized on the modern 10,000-seat stadium performed in traditional Greek style.

The Olympic volleyball beach tournament lasted for 12 days. The event made an unforgettable impression both on fans and players due to its interesting and unusual entertainment program. Famous DJs, dancers as well as multilingual announcers were asked to take part in the entertainment program of Athens 2004 Olympic volleyball beach tournament.

Women’s Medalists of Athens 2004 Olympic Games

It goes without saying that women from the United States demonstrated the best results in these Olympic Games. Kerri Walsh and Misty May from the United States, Adriana Behar and Shelda from Brazil and Holly McPeak and Elaine Youngs from the United States won women’s gold, silver and bronze medals respectively.

Men’s Medalists of Athens 2004 Olympic Games

The situation in men’s Olympic beach volleyball competition has changed as well. Ricardo and Emanuel from Brazil, Javier Bosma and Pablo Herrera from Spain and Patrick Heuscher and Stefan Kobel Switzerland won men’s gold, silver and bronze medals respectively.

Olympic Games in Beijing 2008

The 4-th Olympic Games with beach volleyball took place in Beijing in 2008. Beijing 2008 Olympic beach volleyball tournament lasted more than 14 days. This time the Olympic beach volleyball tournament took place in the fantastic 12,000-seat Chaoyang Park Beach Volleyball Ground. The sport event united 24 women’s and 24 men’s teams from different countries across the world. It’s important to know that the teams from the United States won both men’s and women’s gold medals in these Olympic Games.

Women’s Medalists of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

Women’s teams from China demonstrated excellent results in this Olympic beach volleyball tournament as well. Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh from the United States, Jia Tian and Jie Wang from China and Zhang Xi and Xue Chen from China won women’s gold, silver and bronze medals respectively.

Men’s Medalists of Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

The United States and Brazil were leaders in the men’s Olympic beach volleyball competition. Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers from the United States, Marcio Araujo and Fabio Magalhaes from Brazil and Emanuel and Ricardo from Brazil won men’s gold, silver and bronze medals respectively.

Olympic Games in London 2012

The 5-th Olympic Games with beach volleyball took place in London in 2012. The London 2012 Olympic beach volleyball tournament united 96 of the world’s best beach volleyball players. The competition took place in the wonderful 15,000 seat stadium.

Beatles legend, Sir Paul McCartney, as well as former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan attended the Olympic beach volleyball tournament. Traditionally, 24 men’s and 24 women’s beach volleyball teams took part in the competition.

According to the statistical data, more than 425,000 beach volleyball fans enjoyed the Olympic competition. For the first time in the history of beach volleyball in the Olympic Games people have an opportunity to enjoy the fantastic beach party.

Women’s Medalists of London 2012 Olympic Games

The legendary American pair, Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh, won the women’s gold medal in these Olympic Games once again. Actually, it was the 3-rd gold medal of this American pair in the Olympic Games. Jennifer Kessy and April Ross from China and Larissa França and Juliana Felisberta Da Silva from Brazil won women’s silver and bronze medals respectively.

Men’s Medalists of London 2012 Olympic Games

Julius Brink and Jonas Reckermann from Germany won gold men’s medal; Alison Cerutti and Emanuel Rego from Brazil won silver men’s medal; and Janis Smedins and Martins Plavins from Latvia won bronze men’s medal in London 2012 Olympic Games.