In 1985 in St. Louis, MO, a group of seven men and women formed the original leadership for what was initially known as the National Senior Olympics Organization (NSOO). In the fall of 1985 they hosted a meeting of individuals who were currently conducting games for seniors in their 33 states. That group planned the first National Senior Olympic Games, held in 1987 in St. Louis. The games were a great success with 2,500 competitors. The NSOO was formalized during the games with a Board of Directors elected, articles of incorporation filed in the State of Missouri and by-laws adopted. Over 100,000 spectators viewed the first Games ceremonies featuring Bob Hope at the St. Louis Riverfront Arch.
The second National Games also took place in St. Louis in 1989, hosting 3,500 seniors and were covered by the New York Times, ESPN and Good Morning America.
In 1990 an agreement was reached with the United States Olympic Committee based on their objection to the use of the term Olympic in the organization’s corporate name and the name was changed to the U.S. National Senior Sports Organization. Today, the organization does business as the National Senior Games Association. The organization continued to name its signature event the National Senior Games - The Senior Olympics and, through a grandfather clause, States that were using the name Senior Olympics at the time of the USOC agreement were allowed to continue that privilege.
The National Senior Games Association moved its corporate office to Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1998 where it exists today as a non-profit organization dedicated to motivating active adults to lead a healthy lifestyle through the senior games movement.