Weather and sport

Olympics

  1. paralympics Find out how we're supporting London 2012
  2. paralympic cycling Showcasing cutting-edge weather techniques and technology in forecasting during the Paralympics.
  3. paralympic archery Find out more about how weather affects sport from professional athletes.

Weather and sport

The weather can have a huge impact on sports, as the UK's national weather service, we're always there when it matters, applying our science so that people can make the most of the weather.

The weather can have a huge impact on sports - from cycling to surfing, cricket to beach volleyball. As the UK's national weather service, we're always there when it matters, applying our science so that people can make the most of the weather.

Many sports are affected by the weather in some way and conditions are important to athletes and spectators alike. Sometimes the impact of weather on sport is clear for all to see. It can help or hinder - headwinds make running and cycling harder, while tailwinds help push us forward. Some world records are invalid if set under certain conditions.

Most of those participating in indoor sports like squash or badminton aren't too worried, but for sports like hockey or windsurfing, the weather is central to the entire event. On the whole, dry and settled conditions are favoured by most competitors in most sports. However, high temperatures can be challenging, significantly affecting the performance of athletes and, in extreme cases, can cause heat illnesses such as heat cramps and heat stroke.

The Met Office is working closely with LOCOG to provide weather forecasts and information to teams and their trainers throughout the Olympic and Paralympic games. In the build up to the Paralympics we've also been looking in more detail at how Paralympic athletes and professional sportsmen and women look to the weather forecast to train and plan strategy and tactics.

Debbie Criddle

Debbie Criddle Paralympic equestrian Debbie Criddle and her horse Akilles will have to display both athleticism and elegance to win for Team GB. Here Debbie talks about the impact of the weather on her training and preparation for the games. Read the full article or watch the video.

Maddie Hinch

Maddie HinchGreat Britain Hockey player Maddie Hinch says that actually rain can be a welcome part of the forecast - as long as it's not too cold. "Rain this summer will make the pitch play nicely". Read the full interview or watch the video.

Todd Leckie

ToddLeckie Triathlon For Triathlete Todd Leckie Daily forecasts are important for training too, as the athletes want to know they can train in the most efficient way possible. "I train on average six hours a day, six days a week... triathlon is my job. I look at the weather forecast everyday and plan my training accordingly". Read more about the impact of weather on Triathlons or watch the video.

Mike Peart

mike pearte olympic archer "The weather, and especially the wind, has a fundamental impact on the score.  I need to know how to prepare..." Olympic archer Mike Peart talks about how modern technology can overcome Mother Nature". Read the full interview or watch the video.

Last updated: 28 August 2012

  • London 2012 Paralympic Games
    29 August - 9 September - Check the latest five day forecast for each of the sites for this year's Paralympic Games.

  • London weather
    London will host a huge number of Olympic and Paralympic events between July and September 2012.

  • Para-equestrian dressage
    Paralympic equestrian Debbie Criddle talks about how knowing the weather can help her prepare.

  • Rowing
    "It's not the weather that decides the boat race, it's whoever copes with it the best who wins."

  • Windsurfing
    Windsurfing "the weather will affect your first, and all future, sessions on the water".

  • Road cycling
    All Olympic cyclists will be taking note of the forecast before they put the finishing touches to their cycling race plan.

  • Forecasting for sailing
    When it comes to sailing, knowing what the wind and sea are doing is everything.

  • Triathlon and the weather
    Professional triathlete Todd Leckie stays ahead of the pack by using the weather forecast to plan his race day training.

  • Archery and the weather
    Olympic Archer Mike Peart talks about how modern technology can help beat Mother Nature

  • Hockey and the weather
    Hockey and the weather. An interview with professional womens hockey player Maddie Hinch.

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