A few years ago, it was obvious that the paddle could not have its place in Olympic Games : only two countries (Spain and Argentina) actively practiced this sport, thus not justifying the universal character that must have an Olympic sport.

Now things haven't changed completely, but the growth of padel in the world is so fast that it seems we can see the padel in Olympics not so far away.

Get the Olympic card

To become an Olympic sport, padel will have to fulfill all conditions of the International Olympic Committee (IOC):

  1. sport must be practiced in 75 countries from 4 continents for men
  2. sport must be practiced in 40 countries on 3 continents for women
  3. the world anti-doping code must be adopted and applied in this sport
  4. the sport must be accepted seven years before making its appearance at the Olympic Games
  5. a maximum of 28 sports can be found at the Olympic Games, thus forcing a sport to no longer be Olympic if a new sport were to enter.

The first four conditions are relatively easy to obtain for padel, but the fifth is the problem. Competition is fierce between the various activities that deserve a place in the Olympics, and the large number of recurring sports leaves very little room for new disciplines.

When is padel at the Olympics?

According to the IOC criteria, padel could obviously not be Olympic for the Tokyo Olympics, nor for the Paris Olympics in 2024. The seven year window between theobtaining the Olympic card andappearance of sport at the Olympics makes it seem complicated to see our sport at the Olympics before Los Angeles 2028.

Even, the real possibility would rather be for 2032 : this will require the padel to obtain the Olympic card before 2025. This five-year period to standardize its global development seems fair, given its speed of expansion in the world.

It will then be necessary to fight with the other sports which apply for a place in the Olympic Games.

No handipadel for the Tokyo Olympics

In 2017, the'handipadel was a sport in the race to be offered at the Tokyo Paralympic Games. According to the number 1 of the sport, Oscar Agea, it would even be “plus easy to play padel in a wheelchair than tennis."

We will have to wait to see the handipadel in Paralympic competition: the program of Paris 2024 Paralympic Games has been unveiled and wheelchair padel is not included. Other sports such as wheelchair football, handisport golf, surfing or even arm wrestling have been preferred to him.

The Olympics to create a virtuous circle

Padel is in a phase of massive expansion around the world. This sport with mexican roots, is gradually appearing on all continents, gradually gaining the universal character imposed on an Olympic sport.

The Olympic Games would be the definitive spotlight for padel which, at that time, succeeded in conquering the world.

Lorenzo Lecci López

By his names, we can guess his Spanish and Italian origins. Lorenzo is a polyglot passionate about sport: journalism by vocation and events by adoration are his two legs. Its ambition is to cover the biggest sporting events (Olympics and Worlds). He is interested in the padel situation in France, and offers perspectives for optimal development.