In the Shot Put, athletes must put the shot as far as possible. The shot is a solid ball weighing 7.26kg for men. Athletes start in a throwing circle, with the shot in one hand close to or touching their neck. The shot must be put from this position.
The distance the shot travels is measured from the front of the throwing circle to the point the shot first touches the ground, which must be within the lines of the throwing sector. At the front of the throwing circle is a 10cm high, 1.2m wide stop board, which the athletes may plant their foot against but must not step on or over.
In all throwing events, athletes start with a qualifying round. Throwing in turn, each athlete gets three attempts to achieve a qualifying distance, decided by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Technical Delegates. Once all throws have been completed, all athletes who have achieved the qualifying distance go through to the final. If fewer than 12 athletes achieve the qualifying standard, the best 12 athletes go through.
In the final, athletes have three initial throws, with the top eight after the first three rounds then having a further three throws. The athlete who performs the longest throw is the winner.
In the event of a tie, athletes’ second-best throws are compared, followed by their third, and so on.
Keys to success
Throwing events are not just about brute strength, but also about technique. Each throw has several aspects to it, such as the hold, the run-up or the turn, as well as the throwing action itself.
Find out more about the Men's Shot Put competition at the Olympic Games on the International Olympic Committee website.