300,000 condoms for Paris 2024 athletes. GETTY IMAGES

After Tokyo 2020, with contact restrictions to stop the COVID-19 pandemic, the strict health policy of the Olympic Games is back and Paris 2024 will distribute 300,000 condoms to athletes, twice as many as London 2012, but far from the record set by Rio 2016.

After the somewhat peculiar Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, held in an odd year (2021) and with strict contact restrictions between athletes, spectators and journalists due to COVID, everything is back to normal.

One of the traditions of the Olympic Games is that thousands of athletes from all over the world live together in the Olympic Village to promote a spirit of friendship and camaraderie, rather than only competitive sport, as a symbol of unity and peace between nations.

For years, this scene has been accompanied by a responsible health policy, with thousands of condoms made available to athletes, delegation escorts and coaches for use during the event.

The director of the Olympic Village, Laurent Michaud, revealed in an interview with Sky News that the Paris 2024 Games will have 300,000 condoms available for the more than 14,000 athletes and coaches who will be staying in the Olympic Village on the outskirts of the Parisian capital. "It's very important that the conviviality here is something big," Michaud told Britain's Sky News.

This policy is a return to the usual parameters, as although nearly 150,000 condoms were distributed at Tokyo 2020, restrictive policies and bans on intimacy for athletes were the protagonists of Games where close physical contact was conspicuously absent.

Since the 1988 Seoul Olympics, organisers have distributed condoms to raise awareness of and protection against the AIDS virus and to protect people's health as a fundamental right. "Working with the athletes' commission, we wanted to create some places where the athletes would feel very enthusiastic and comfortable," said Michaud.

A condom dispenser in the Olympic and Paralympic Village at Rio 2016. GETTY IMAGES
A condom dispenser in the Olympic and Paralympic Village at Rio 2016. GETTY IMAGES

While intimacy is once again allowed at the Olympic Games, alcohol will not be allowed in the Olympic Village, although no one can ban it outside the official gastronomic venue, which will offer French specialities as well as dishes that respect cultures from around the world, including a significant vegan menu.

Although the number is just over 20 condoms per Olympic Village resident, it is far from the record set at Rio 2016, where the IOC distributed nearly 450,000 condoms, 100,000 female condoms and 175,000 bottles of lubricant. That was an average of almost 40 per athlete or delegation member, almost double the figure for Paris 2024 between 26 July and 11 August.