In May 2014 Switzerland was invited for the first time to participate at the EY Modern Pentathlon near London. The two teams were greatly impressed of the organization and structure of the event as well as of the motivation of all participants. Arriving back home with the Pentathlon spirit travelling with them, they figured that Switzerland with its gorgeous alps serves as perfect playground to initiate a winter version of the EY Modern Pentathlon.
As the events of the ancient pentathlon were modeled after the skills of the ideal soldier of that time, the Modern Pentathlon was created to simulate the experience of a 19th-century cavalry soldier behind enemy lines: he must ride an unfamiliar horse, fight with pistol and sword, swim, and run.
We can't image though why Swissathlon never made it to the Olympic Games: fighting in any mountain terrain during the winter (of which there is a lot out there in the world) would definitely require skills of skiing and uphill running rather than jogging and swimming. Shooting probably always serves in a proper war and curling - well, that could be the ultimate decision maker in a fight on a frozen lake: sliding big stones across the feet of the enemy lines, bringing them down as they stumble.
What a great target: making Swissathlon an Olympic discipline. Nothing is impossible :-)
Modern pentathlon -
the child of the modern olympic games
As at the end of the 19th century the significant personalities to Baron Pierre de Coubertin were preparing to make the Olympic Games of the modern era, they wanted to introduce a similar competition of versatility based on the ancient Pentathlon of the Greeks.
Since the Olympic Games 1912 in Stockholm, the Modern Pentathlon is part of Olympic program. The required versatility and original bondage of aristocratic officer qualities such as fencing and horseback riding led to fairly small field of participants of well-heeled amateurs from a few nations. Thanks to the founding of the International Association UIPM (Union Internationale du Pentathlon Moderne) in 1948 and the great work of the CISM (Conseil International du Sport Militaire) after the Second World War it was possible to democratize the sport and expand it to more than 50 national associations.
Today, both men and women (since the 2000 Olympic Games in Sidney) compete in all five disciplines of the Modern Pentathlon on one day. A point system for each sport is based on a standard performance earning 1000 points.