Up to four players must compete in six events: 100 meter dash, long jump, javelin throw, 110 meter hurdles, hammer throw, and high jump. Each player must attempt to qualify in one event before moving on to the next. If a player fails to qualify in two events, the game is over, although extra chances can be earned. In addition to beating the qualifying score, "world records" can also be broken. In every event but the hammer throw, the player controls the athlete's speed by tapping the left and right run buttons as fast they are physically capable. The faster they tap the buttons, the faster the athlete will run. A third action button is available to make the athlete jump or throw. In many of the events, the duration that the action button is held down for determines the angle of the athlete's jump/throw.
- Run: Tap the left and right run buttons in a rhythmic pattern to make your athlete run. One button must be complete pressed and released before the other button is pressed, or the second button press will not count. The more rhythmic and quick each button is pressed, the more effective and faster your athlete with run.
- Jump/Throw: Press the Jump/Throw button at the right moments to initiate a jump or throw an object. For the Long Jump, Javelin Throw, Hammer Throw, and High Jump, the duration that the Jump/Throw button is held down for, determines the angle that your athlete will jump, or the object will be thrown. Be sure to release the button at the right moment. In the 110 Meter Hurdles, tapping the jump button simply makes your athlete jump the hurdles.
- 1-4 Players: Press the one, two, three, or four player buttons to start a one through four player game. In a four player game, players 1 and 2 will compete against each other, and players 3 and 4 will compete against each other.