Boris Johnson, who studied the Classics at Oxford, stood up before the opening of the new wrestling venue to give a brief historic outline of Greco-Roman wrestling.
Much to everyone’s surprise, the London mayor and PM decided to also give a hands-on demonstration of the different styles of wrestling.
The London 2012 Olympic competition consists of two styles – Greco-Roman, where athletes use their upper bodies and arms only, and Freestyle, where athletes can use any part of their bodies.
Wrestling was one of the first sporting disciplines to be added to the Olympic Games in 700 B.C. This event was also part of the pentathlon. Wrestling was regarded as the best expression of strength out of all of the competitions and was represented in Greek mythology by Heracles.
“Boris and David Cameron were brilliant. They showed us how to do Greco-Roman wrestling as well as Freestyle. It’s great to see politicians getting into the Olympic spirit like that,” Julien Offal, a member of the audience at the ExCeL told the BBC.
A total of 344 wrestlers will compete across 18 medal events. These include seven Greco-Roman events for men and 11 Freestyle events, including seven for men and four for women.