The initiative of holding the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) belonged to IOC President Jacques Rogge.
At the 119th IOC Session held on 6 July 2007 it was decided that the Youth Olympic Games would be staged every four years. It should be noted that all YOG attributes and rituals are carried out in the same manner as referring to the “senior” Olympiads.
On 10 December 2008 the IOC Executive Board approved both the YOG sport program and the qualification system.
The first Youth Olympic Games Singapore 2010 gathered 3 594 athletes in 30 sports including 201 disciplines. A number of sports was identical to the London Games 2012 program.
Every tournament has its own age group: 27 disciplines for up to 15-16 year-old, 111 – for under 16-17, and 63 events involve U 17-18.
The most relevant distinction of the Youth Olympiads concludes in gender-mixed teams of boys and girls taking part in certain events, combined competitions and admission of the continental teams consisting of different NOCs’ representatives to the sport program.
The opportunity to get 205 NOCs involved is considered the major factor of the YOG universality. At least 4 quotas are secured for every NOC to participate in individuals sports – the so-called “universal quotas”.
The qualifying system for any sport or discipline presupposes close cooperation with all international federations in order to select best athletes among every age group.
The playing tournaments – football, handball, field hockey and volleyball – include one team per one of the continents, as well as the sixth team of the host country or of the other country (in the IOC discretion following the international federation’s recommendation).
NOCs are allowed to set no more than one team in men’s and one in women’s tournaments regarding the abovementioned four sports.
Regardless of athletes composition and their qualification, sport delegations cannot be more than 70 athletes for individual sports in it.
Apart from the sport program, the YOG has the educational and cultural missions, which help younger athletes to discover the world of Olympism.