As one of the world's most ancient types of sport, athletics is a collection of sporting events that involve competitive running, jumping, throwing, and walking.

The first running race is assumed to be organized in Egypt in 3800 BC.  Organized athletics are traced back to the Ancient Olympic Games from 776 BC. 

The rules and format of the modern events in athletics were defined in Western Europe and North America in the 19th and early 20th century and were then spread to other parts of the world. The widespread development of modern athletic games began in 1986. 

A standard outdoor track is in the shape of a stadium. The first World Championship in Athletics was organized in 1983 on an outdoor track. Winter competitions have been taking place in covered stadiums since 1985.