The roots of surfing can be traced to Polynesia, where surfers have been riding waves for thousands of years. Captain Cook was first to document surfing activities in his ship's log in the late 1700s. Surfing continued in Hawaii as the "royal sport" and came to international prominence in the early 1900s, when famous Hawaiian surfer Duke Kahanamoku won a swimming gold medal in the 1912 Olympics.

Learn more about Surfing on The World Games Channel.



Competitive history ...

Whilst the sport developed in many regions around the world, it wasn't until 1964 that the first World Surfing Championships were held in Sydney, Australia, and that the sport really came came of age. Since 1977, the International Surfing Association has conducted the biennial World Surfing Games.

Surf's up everywhere ...

Surfing is practiced in most countries that border with an Ocean and even in some landlocked countries such as Switzerland. The total number of licensed surfers stands at well over 100,000 and it is estimated that there are more than 20 million recreational surfers worldwide. The International Surfing Association has currently more than 50 member nations. All members hold national championships.

Surfing and The World Games ...

Surfing has not yet been able to put in its first appearance at The World Games. True, some of the currently nine host cities bordered on, or were sufficiently close to, a suitable body of water. However, conditions need to be perfect for the world's best to determine their champions. And neither 2001 Akita nor 2009 Kaohsiung were able to provide them without resorting to the one option that ISA believes will eventually put surfing over the top: an indoor facility capable of generating the ultimate wave. It does exist, but only at considerable expense! For the time being, surfing stands by and hopes for a maritime host city to be able to proclaim: "Surf is up!"

Contact | Legal | All rights reserved :: IWGA 2011-2012 | Code & Design by JayKay-Design S.C.