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a. track and field events
b. (as modifier): an athletics meeting
2. sports or exercises engaged in by athletes
3. the theory or practice of athletic activities and training



(1) The art of developing strength, agility, and other qualities through physical exercise. In modern physical training the term “athletics” is used only in the categories of light athletics and heavy athletics. However, athletics is a part of almost every sport in one form or another.

(2) A form of circus art that includes exercises demanding strength and agility. In the early 19th century circus performances began to include acts demonstrating feats of strength. In the USSR the genre of athletics has been used in the circus since the 1930’s. Athletic acts are built on the best achievements of Soviet sport. The greatest Soviet athletes include N. Zherebtsov, G. Novak, V. Khertsa, and the NeUpovich brothers.

References in periodicals archive ?
Welsh Athletics chief executive officer Matt Newman said: "Welsh Athletics is delighted that Swansea has won the bid for the 2014 IPC European Athletics Championships.
Hemant Desai of Northumberland Athletics Network claimed the Athletics Network of the Year prize and Guillaume Zoppi from Heaton Harriers triumphed the Development Club of Year category.
European Athletics President Hansjorg Wirz said of the award: "2012 showed that athletics remains the biggest and most popular sport in the Olympic programme.
More info on events and the 2012: Burning Ambition programme will be published on the dedicated page on the Welsh Athletics website.
And Hazel - who claimed gold at last year's Commonwealth Games in Delhi - believes Gibson is well placed for a bright future in athletics after a storming start.
But the shine was taken off Coun Mullaney's announcement when UK Athletics confirmed that, although it is considering moving to Alexander Stadium, no decision has been taken.
As Christine Grant, the director of women's athletics at the University of Iowa, puts it, "When the programs merged, the women were submerged.
Shaikh Khalid met Prince Nawaf bin Mohammed Al Saud, the President of the Saudi Athletics Association, and discussed with him the best means to enhance cooperation between the athletics associations in the two countries, highlighting the steady growth of the Bahraini-Saudi relations in all fields.
The North Face will also host a series of regional events to provide everyday athletes with a preview of the Mountain Athletics Collection and training program beginning in March 2014.
Being staged just one day before the British Athletics Birmingham Grand Prix, on Saturday, June 29, the event is expected to welcome more than 144 athletes competing in 18 disciplines.
Specialising in Sport is again offering the opportunity for children, aged eight to 15, in Coventry and Warwickshire to take part and discover their skills in a variety of athletics events including pole vault, hammer, relays and triple jump.
Tyler, as founder of the Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre, has developed a world-class reputation for creating innovative and effective programmes for coach education, athlete development and youth development.