Tom Waddell said that the games were “conceived as a new idea in the meaning of sport based on inclusion rather than exclusion.” Anyone is welcome to compete regardless of race, sex, age, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, or athletic ability. In keeping with the masters movement in sports, athletes compete with each other in their own age group. Many of the sports are officially sanctioned by their respective national masters organizations. Athletes participate not as representatives of their respective countries but as individuals on behalf of cities and towns. To date there have been no minimum qualifying standards in any events.