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Surfing to Take Center Stage at Olympics in 2020

Chris Maddaloni

A Hilton Head, South Carolina, entrepreneur, Chris Maddaloni leads Atlantic Personnel, Inc., where he provides client-centered employment solutions. An avid traveler, Chris Maddaloni has visited numerous cities worldwide, and once had the chance to attend the summer Olympics during a trip.

The next summer Olympics will be held in 2020 in Tokyo, and feature a surprising aquatic debut: surfing. The decision to include surfing as an Olympic sport is the culmination of advocacy by Hawaiian legend Duke Kahanamoku a half century ago. The sport’s inclusion was agreed upon by all 90 IOC members, along with the inclusion of other newly introduced sports such as karate, skateboarding, and climbing.
While initial rumors revolved around using artificial waves (such as those in Kelly Slater’s wave pool) to ensure consistency, the official decision was that the surfing competition should take place in the ocean.
The initial events will be held in Chiba at Shidashita Beach, not far from the Tokyo metro area, with the location selected for its consistency during the summer months. To ensure quality surf, there will be a 16-day waiting period for the 2-day event to be completed. In total, 20 qualifying men and 20 women from around the world will compete for Olympic gold.

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