What is DNA?

Dynamic New Athletics, or DNA, is an innovative, team-based competition concept for athletics created by European Athletics to complement the classical athletics format. Launched at the 2019 European Games in Minsk, Belarus, DNA targets younger fans and participant groups and gives our sport a new dimension for the 21st Century.

Key Features

DNA integrates modified rules, presentational possibilities and digital communications elements that can be adapted for every level of the competition pyramid while remaining true to the essence of athletics. Key features include:

  • Mixed gender teams.
  • A compact programme of interchangeable disciplines.
  • Head-to-head competition in the field events with every attempt counting towards the team match score.
  • Team match results remain open and unpredictable until the final competition discipline.

Added Value

The DNA format for elite showcase events offers new value to both in-stadium spectators and media audiences through:

  • One event taking place at a time in the arena, making the event easier for new and casual fans to follow.
  • Team strategy and tactics, highlighting the role of the team captain and the importance of team spirit.
  • High quality event presentation through the integration of multiple video screens, music, lights and spectator engagement activities.
  • A two-hour timetable that is the perfect length for live broadcasts.

DNA’s flexible school and club level formats, offer grassroots participants of all levels new value through:

  • The compact timetable makes it easy to integrate competitions into modern, time-scarce lifestyles.
  • Smartphone applications that include competition management, statistics, educational and promotional elements.
  • The enhanced team element of the sport helps keeps athletes engaged throughout the season, thereby increasing participation rates.
  • The compact programme means fewer athletes per team, making it possible for larger clubs and schools to field multiple teams and smaller clubs and schools to be competitive.

A New Dimension

DNA is a new way for fans and athletes of all levels to enjoy our sport.  Like chocolate complements vanilla or Hip Hop complements opera, DNA offers a choice that is a complement to traditional or classical athletics, which remain the format for elite international competitions such as the Olympic Games, European Championships and Diamond League.

Excited by this? Have a look at the rest of the DNA.run website, visit the FAQs and check back for updates as we continue to develop athletics for the 21st Century.

dna the way forward