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The Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has confirmed that breaking will feature in the Games of the XXXIII Olympiad, Paris 2024, as the newest addition to the sports program. This all but closes the circle on a visionary statement made by IOC President Dr. Thomas Bach prior to his election in 2013.

From left: WDSF President Lukas Hinder, IOC President Thomas Bach © IOC

The decision to add breaking to the program of the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) was taken by the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee in early December 2016. Only four years later, it is confirmed to feature in Paris 2024. A sport on the fast track to Olympia? Only if you blend out the 25+ years that it took from the moment that DanceSport was first recognized as an Olympic sport – or the 20 years since it premiered in the Closing Ceremony of the Sydney Games. The vision and the resilience of a few exceptional people made the dream come true. In this context, I would like to single out and congratulate the WDSF Honorary President Lukas Hinder.

Working on communications for DanceSport’s world governing body. I had the privilege to walk part of the way – from 2007 through 2018 – alongside Lukas. And when he made his pitch to the powers that be in the Olympic movement, I was able to help prepare some of the tools he used to be at his most convincing.

Now that DanceSport – with much emphasis on the encompassing nature of the brand – is Olympic, I hope that those still involved will be able to preserve the esprit the corps that we alluded at in a presentation to the IOC in early 2016. Taking up on a statement that the IOC President Thomas Bach had made repeatedly while campaigning for the top job in 2013, “I can well imagine that a gymnast and a hip hopper will meet for the first time at the YOG” (Bach quote in German newspapers such as Bild, Die Zeit, e.a.), we tried to deal with the sport's reality as of 2016. In spite of the generally narrow perception of what constituted dance as sport at the time, we tried to put all emphasis on youth ... Timelessness ... Togetherness ... Four years later we can proudly say: "It worked!"

BTW! Indoor skydiving stood as one of the 20 candidates for inclusion into the Paris 2024 Olympics too. Even if it came up short of attaining the goal, it is a sporting discipline that has much in common with breaking. As of two weeks ago, indoor skydiving has also ventured into staging its contests virtually: Sky on Stage

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