Modern Pentathlon at the 1956 Summer Olympics

Dates 23 – 28 November 1956
Medal Events 2

The biggest change in modern pentathlon was that it was no longer scored on a point-for-place system, as it had been at the Olympics from 1912-1952, but was now scored by a series of scoring tables. The scoring tables débuted internationally at the 1954 World Championships. The events were as in 1952, with an individual and team event, the team event consisting of all three athletes from one nation’s team. The order of events was the same as it had been since 1932 – riding, fencing, shooting, swimming, and running. The competition took place over 6 days, with a rest day after the fencing competition. The quarantine problem with horses, that necessitated moving Olympic Equestrian to Stockholm, did not affect the modern pentathlon, as the modern pentathletes used local horses assigned by the Organizing Committee, which is standard for the sport.


Event Status Date Participants NOCs
Individual, Men Olympic 23 – 28 November 1956 40 16
Team, Men Olympic 23 – 28 November 1956 36 12
40 (40/0) 16 (16/0)


Event Gold Silver Bronze
Individual, Men Lars HallSWE Ole MannonenFIN Wäinö KorhonenFIN
Team, Men Soviet UnionURS United StatesUSA FinlandFIN

Medal table

NOC Gold Silver Bronze Total
Soviet Union URS 1 0 0 1
Sweden SWE 1 0 0 1
Finland FIN 0 1 2 3
United States USA 0 1 0 1