Yahiko Mishima

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games • Other
Full nameYahiko•Mishima
Used nameYahiko•Mishima
Original name三島•弥彦
Born23 February 1886 in Chiyoda, Tokyo (JPN)
Died1 February 1954 in Meguro, Tokyo (JPN)
Measurements175 cm / 71 kg
AffiliationsKyoto University, Kyoto (JPN)
NOC Japan


The son of the local police superintendent Yahiko Mishima studied law at the Tokyo Imperial University. At the time in Japan, his height of 175 cm made him suitable for various sports: he was captain in the baseball club, an ardent rower and skier, and also practiced judo, riding, sumo, and skating.

In 1911, Mishima started with athletics and took part in the trials for the Stockholm Olympics held at the Haneda Stadium, although he was originally only invited to act as a member of the jury. He actually placed first in the 100, 400, and 800 metre and finished second in the 200. Due to budget constraints, only marathon runner Shizo Kanakuri and Mishima were selected, with Mishima chosen because he was able to contribute substantially to his travel expenses. During the following months, he was coached by the secretary of the US Embassy.

Mishima was chosen as the flag bearer at the Opening Ceremony. With his complete lack of international experience, a leg injury, and without any coaching he failed to advance out of the heats in both the 100 and 200. Disappointed, he gave up the right to advance to the semifinals in the 400 m. He left Stockholm before the Closing Ceremony, returning to Japan via Germany, where he bought sports equipment that was not available in his home country.

In 1913, Mishima graduated from the Tokyo Imperial University and joined the Yokohama Seikin Bank, where his brother worked. After working in the United States, the United Kingdom, China, and Dutch East-India, he was appointed deputy manager of the head office in 1935. In 1943, he left the bank to become head accountant at the Imperial Silkworm Warehouse Co., Ltd.

After graduation, Mishima continued his involvement in sports and sport administration. He held various positions in the Japan Sports Association and worked for the bid of the 1940 Tokyo Olympics. His sudden death was caused by a ruptured aneurysm. At the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, his daughter-in-law served as interpreter for IOC chairman Avery Brundage.

Personal Bests: 100 – 11.8 (1911); 200 – 25.2s (1911); 400 – 55.0 (1911).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1912 Summer Olympics Athletics JPN Yahiko Mishima
100 metres, Men (Olympic) AC h16 r1/3
200 metres, Men (Olympic) AC h13 r1/3
400 metres, Men (Olympic) 2 h4 r1/3

Other participations

Games Role NOC As
1912 Summer Olympics Flagbearer at the Opening Ceremony JPN Yahiko Mishima