Gymnastics became an Olympic sport in 1896. The games were held in Athens, Greece, and included the parallel bars, horizontal bars, rings, pommel horse and vaulting events for men.
Athletes from five countries competed in the 1896 Olympic gymnastic events, and Germany won the majority of medals. This was the first time a large number of gymnasts had gathered anywhere.
Forms of gymnastics have been practiced as far back as in ancient Greece, and similar disciplines were employed to prepare young men for battle in China, Persia, India and ancient Rome. The Olympic gymnastics engaged in today can be divided into three main categories: artistic, trampoline and rhythmic.