Athletes' event experiences of the XIX Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India

Karin Weber, Jane Ali-Knight, Lesley Nicol

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


This paper aims to examine one primary stakeholder (i.e. athletes) and how they experienced the mega-sport event environment of the XIX Commonwealth Games in the developing nation of India and the city of Delhi. A further objective was to identify key factors of the Games outside of athletic performance that shaped athletes' experiences. A multi-dimensional instrument was created with an expert panel of Commonwealth Games Federation board members and sport management academics to examine athletes' experiences. Data was collected after the start of competition up until three weeks after the completion of the Games. Overall, the athletes had a positive experience. Factors such as ceremonies (e.g. opening), ancillary areas (e.g. fitness facility) and sport venues (e.g. environment) in particular were rated by the athletes as positive. Certain aspects of the Games were identified as requiring improvements such as accommodations (e.g. housekeeping, laundry) and communication (e.g. wireless availability). Further, despite high scores for security, athletes also reported feeling uneasy about additional travel outside the athletes' village. Enhanced opportunities to experience the city outside the athletes' village, increased merchandising opportunities, and holding the opening ceremonies further in advance of the start of competition were suggested by athletes. The study was the first known study to empirically examine athletes' experiences with a mega-sport event such as the Commonwealth Games.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-29
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Event and Festival Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2012


  • Athlete stakeholder
  • Commonwealth Games
  • Developing countries
  • India
  • Mega-sport event
  • Sporting events
  • Sports

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Business,Management and Accounting


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