Weather and sports

With just days to go until the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games, we look at the affect of the weather on four Olympic sports – archery, hockeywindsurfing and triathlon .

Many sports are affected by the weather in some way and conditions are important to athletes and spectators alike. It can help or hinder – headwinds make running and cycling harder, while tailwinds help push us forward, certain conditions can even make world records invalid. For sports like windsurfing, the weather is central to the entire event – without wind, the event cannot take place.

On the whole, dry and settled conditions are favoured by competitors in most sports. However, high temperatures can be challenging, significantly affecting the performance of athletes and, in extreme cases, can cause heat illnesses such as heat cramps and heat stroke.

The Met Office is working closely with LOCOG to provide weather forecasts and information to teams and their trainers throughout the Olympic and Paralympic games. In the build up to the Olympics we’ve also been looking in more detail at how Olympic athletes and professional sportsmen and women look to the weather forecast to train and plan strategy and tactics.

“The weather, and especially the wind, has a fundamental impact on the score. I need to know how to prepare”, says Team GB archer Michael Pearte.

Read Michael’s full interview.

Great Britain Hockey player Maddie Hinch says that actually rain can be a welcome part of the forecast – as long as it’s not too cold.

Read Maddie’s full interview.

Triathlete Todd Leckie told us his ideal conditions would be cool temperatures, no rain and a favourable tail wind. In Britain, though, he admits this is often not the case.

Read Todd’s full interview.

Windsurfing and the weather are intrinsically linked – the wind has an impact on every single session, affecting those just starting out and experienced professionals.

Amy Carter, Editor of Boards Magazine, explains the conditions that windsurfers look out for.

For weather forecasts for all Olympic venues see our events forecast page.

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