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The History of National Stadium

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  • Victory Plaque of the Meiji Jingu Games
  • Victory Plaque of the Meiji Jingu Games

  • The Meiji Jingu Gaien stadium, the much-anticipated modern sports arena, was completed in 1924 in the heart of Tokyo. The stadium hosted an annual sports competition, the Meiji Jingu Championship Games, from 1924 to 1943 and played an important role in promoting and enhancing sports in Japan through the Taisho period (1912-26) and into the early part of the Showa period (1926-89). As World War II intensified, the competition was terminated but was revived after the war in the form of the National Sports Festival.

  • Electric Running Pacemaker
  • Electric Running Pacemaker

  • This device was developed to help long-distance runners in the years leading up to the 1964 Tokyo Games. Following its launch in 1961, it was used for several years on National Stadium tracks. Before the electric pacemaker was employed, runners would have to rely on their coach or their own instincts to set the pace. The practice of using a mechanically controlled device allowed runners to train at world-record speeds, and was a pioneering undertaking that foreshadowed today’s sports science.

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