The two artistic (synchronized) swimming events at the Olympic Games are the team and the duet.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has awarded 96 places for artistic swimming for Paris. World Aquatics, the sport’s governing body, then regulates how each of these spot is allocated.
10 teams and 18 duets will participate in the 2024 Olympic Games. Nations qualified in both the team and duet events can enter a maximum of eight athletes. For the duet, it is a maximum of two. Men are allowed to take part only in the team events.
Athletes will compete in the technical and free events in duet, and in the technical, free, and acrobatic events in team. The combined scores of all two, or three, routines will determine the medal winners. Artistic swimmers younger than 15 years of age are not permitted to compete in the Olympic Games, or they must turn 15 in the year of the Olympics.
Team Qualification: 10
Countries will have two pathways to qualify as a team to the 2024 Olympics:
- Continental Championships (5)
The highest ranked countries (combined scores) in each of the five continental championships will obtain a quota. As the host, France is automatically qualified and occupies the continental quota for Europe.
The quota for Africa and Oceania will go to the top ranked country of each continent at the 2023 World Championships in Fukuoka.
The quota for Asia will go to the country that wins the Asian Games in October 2023.
The quota for the Americas will go to the country that wins the Pan American Games in November 2023.
- 2024 World Championships (5)
The five remaining team spots will be allocated at the World Championships in Doha in February 2024, and obviously to those not already qualified through the continental route.
Per World Aquatics, these two phases are held in chronological order and are not interchangeable.
Duet Qualification: 18
There are three ways for nations to qualify a duet to these Games:
- Through the team (10)
The 10 qualified teams will automatically qualify their duet.
- Continental Championships (5)
Just like for the Tokyo Olympics, the highest placing nation in each of the five continental championships will each obtain a quota place. Should the highest ranked duet already be qualified through the team at that continental event, the next highest ranked pair will obtain that quota.
- 2024 World Championships (3*)
All remaining duet spots will be attributed at these World Championships to reach the total of 18 duets. Just adding up the numbers, it seems three spots are left and up for grabs. However, it might be more once the team field is set, thus leading to potential reallocation of a few continental quotas (i.e. a duet may qualify by itself through the continental route, and the team may qualify later on at the World Championships).
Indeed, if a duet qualifies through the team during this competition, only the rankings of these Worlds will be used to determine the next eligible duet. Similarly, only the rankings of these World Championships will be considered for any remaining reallocations without any reference to continental qualifications.
This means that the continental duet quota will not “move down” to the next highest ranked pair if the original, quota-winning duet ends up earning its quota through the team qualification. That quota will simply be put back into play at the Doha World Championships.
For example, let’s imagine China wins the Asian Games and thus qualifies its team and duet. Japan’s duet places second, and thus earns the second Asian continental duet quota. Then in Doha, the Japanese team qualifies to the Olympic Games. Its duet quota would thus go through that team route. So, that second Asian continental duet quota would be “left empty” and not reattributed to the next best duet from the Asian Games. It would simply be added to the available duet quota spots in Doha.
Like in team, all these phases are to be held in chronological order and separately.
Following each qualification event, the National Olympic Committees have two weeks to confirm if they wish to use their quota places. Should a nation decide to not enter despite being qualified, that spot will be reallocated by World Aquatics to the next best ranked duet or team from the 2024 World Championships that is not yet qualified. For example in the Tokyo Olympic cycle, New Zealand did not take its continental duet quota. It was hence put back into play at the 2021 Olympic Games Qualification Tournament.
The full qualification system is available here.
Paris 2024 Qualification Timeline
- June 21 – 25, 2023 – European Games (Oświęcim, Poland)
- July 14 – 22, 2023 – World Championships (Fukuoka, Japan)
- October 5 – 8, 2023 – Asian Games (Hangzhou, China)
- November 2 – 5, 2023 – Pan American Games (Santiago, Chile)
- February 2 – 18, 2024 – FINA World Championships (Doha, Qatar)
- August 5 – 10, 2024 – Olympic Games (Paris, France)
Qualified nations to the 2024 Olympics:
|Oceania Continental Championships (2023 World Championships)||1||Australia|
|Africa Continental Championships (2023 World Championships)||1||Egypt|
|Pan American Games||1|
|2024 World Championships||5|
|Through the teams||10||Australia
France+ 7 TBD
|Oceania Continental Championships (2023 World Championships)||1||New Zealand|
|Africa Continental Championships (2023 World Championships)||1||South Africa|
|Pan American Games||1|
|2024 World Championships||3*|
* Subject to change following the team qualifications and quota reallocation.