Rhythmic gymnastics is an sport where competitors manipulate 5 types of apparatus: rope, hoop, ball, clubs and ribbon. Competition takes place individually or in teams of five. Competitors are rewarded points by a selected team of judges for leaps, balances, pivots, flexibility, apparatus handling and artistic effect. The Code of Points has been twice in recent years, in 2001 and 2003, with emphasis on technical elements and to promote objectiveness in judging. Also, before 2001, judging was on a scale of 10, it is now on a scale of 30. There are two categories, Juniors, which is for girs under 16, and Seniors, for girls 16 and over. Gymnasts typically start training at a very young age and those at their peak are typically in their late teens or early twenties.
The largest events in the sport are the Olympic Games, World Championships, and the Corbeil-Essonnes Tournament.
At the moment, rhythmic gymnastics is a sport for girls, however, there is a movement to officially create rhythmic gymnastics for men. Men's rhythmic gymnastics is already popular in Japan.
Rhythmic gymnastics developed out of 19th century Swedish and German gymnastic styles and was added to the Summer Olympic Games in 1984.