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New Pentathlon Discipline Test Event III: All you need to know

Modern Pentathlon
  • More than 120 teenage pentathletes ready to trial Obstacle Discipline
  • Twenty-one nations from five continents represented
  • President Schormann invites youths to ‘influence future direction’


The UIPM Youth World Championships always provides a glimpse of the future of Modern Pentathlon. This year, the vision is more vivid and more important than ever.

Today and tomorrow, more than 120 of the world’s best teenage pentathletes will enjoy their first taste of Obstacle Discipline, the concept proposed for integration with Modern Pentathlon after the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.

Twenty-one nations have registered athletes for New Pentathlon Discipline Test Event III, and around 25 Italian pentathletes of various ages will also have a chance to try the course, taking the total number of participants close to 150.

Many of the Youth athletes, who are competing throughout the week in Under 19 and Under 17 categories, will be maturing into senior contenders during the Los Angeles 2028 cycle – when a new-look Modern Pentathlon will be introduced to the Olympic Games, pending approval by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

That’s why the opportunity they will have over the next two days – and their feedback about the experience – is so fundamental to the future of the sport.

Test Event III will be held on a beach in front of the Bella Italia complex in Lignano Sabbiadoro on September 9-10, in parallel with the UIPM 2022 Youth World Championships (U19/U17) which began on September 4 and continue until September 11.

A bespoke course has been constructed in collaboration with World Obstacle (FISO) and Tokyo Broadcasting System Television (TBS), the rights holder of the globally popular SASUKE/Ninja Warrior TV show.

Participants in the Youth World Championships have responded positively to the invitation to race an obstacle course for the first time, with the following 21 countries from five continents having registered athletes to take part:

  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • Egypt
  • France
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Great Britain 
  • Guatemala
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Korea
  • Lithuania
  • Mexico
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Spain
  • Switzerland
  • Ukraine


Both days will consist of a demonstration, followed by a free training session and then a competition. The course will be open to Youth World Championships participants from 4.30-6pm each day. After the competition they will be invited to provide feedback on their experience along with coaches and observers, as per the previous two Test Events in Ankara (TUR) and Manila (PHI).

Earlier on both days (10.30am-12pm), athletes from clubs across Italy will be given a separate opportunity to test the obstacle course outwith the international competition.

The course is comprised of the following 10 obstacles:

  1. Wing nuts
  2. 1.5m wall (over)
  3. 1.5m wall (under)
  4. Through bars
  5. Cycle road
  6. Balance beam
  7. Monkey bars
  8. Run and roll
  9. Sonic swing
  10. Warped wall


UIPM President Dr Klaus Schormann said: “We are all very excited for the New Pentathlon Discipline Test Event III here in Lignano Sabbiadoro because it will give a new generation of pentathletes the chance to influence the future direction and format of our sport.

“We already saw the appetite for Obstacle Discipline among the senior athletes who took part in Ankara after the UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Final and in the Asia / Oceania representatives who participated in Manila during the Ninja World Cup. Now we will see and hear what the teenagers of our sport think about this concept.

“I would like to thank the Italian Modern Pentathlon Federation under the leadership of Fabrizio Bittner, the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) and all partners and volunteers for making this special occasion possible. I wish all participating to embrace this opportunity and have fun.”

Fabrizio Bittner, President of the Italian Modern Pentathlon Federation (FIPM), said: “We are delighted to be able to host the New Pentathlon Discipline Test Event III in Italy.

“Obstacle Discipline, in addition to being an exciting spectacle, lends itself to an easier dissemination and greater involvement of young people, allowing them to try their hand at a physical-athletic activity which develops basic motor skills. This is why we are happy to be able to host the latest test during the UIPM 2022 Youth World Championships and especially in Lignano Sabbiadoro, a location that lends itself very well to such an initiative.”

Obstacle Discipline is in the midst of an intensive pilot phase as a potential addition to Modern Pentathlon for the LA28 Olympic Games. After the successful Test Event I in Ankara (TUR) and Test Event II in Manila (PHI), Test Event III will be followed by Test Event IV in Zielona Gora (POL) on October 7-8, with a special focus on junior (Under 22) participants.

Obstacle Discipline was selected in May 2022 for testing. At the end of the testing and evaluation phase, UIPM 2022 Congress will vote on proposals for the LA28 Modern Pentathlon format to be submitted to the IOC.

Participants in Test Event I gave the event a resounding seal of approval in their answers to an official survey. More than nine out of 10 participating pentathletes (92%) and observers (93%) said they were satisfied or very satisfied with the overall Test Event experience.

Participants in Test Event II also answered the survey with enthusiasm, with 90% of pentathletes and 85% of observers saying they were very satisfied with the overall Test Event experience.

Athletes, coaches and observers involved in the remaining Test Events will be asked the same questions about their experience during the two-day event, and these views will inform and shape the next test.

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