International Surfing Association
|Headquarters||San Diego, California, U.S.|
|President||Fernando Aguerre (ARG)|
The International Surfing Association (ISA) is the world governing authority for surfing, SUP racing, SUP surfing, bodyboarding, and all other wave riding activities. The ISA is recognized by the International Olympic Committee.
History of the ISA
The ISA was originally named the International Surfing Federation (ISF) between 1964 and 1973. An Open Division World Championships has been contested biennially since 1964, a Junior World Championships since 1980, a Masters World Championships since 2007 and a Stand Up Paddle World Championship since 2011.
Recognition as governing body of surfing
In 1982 the SportAccord, formerly known as General Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF), recognized the ISA as the world’s governing body of surfing. in 1995 the International Olympic Committee granted the ISA provisional recognition. ISA was admitted into the Olympic movement at 1997 when the recognition was confirmed by the IOC.
International Surfing Association (ISA) is a Member of:
The ISA’s mission is to make a better world through Surfing, which it does through crowning World Champions, surf and SUP instructor certification, worldwide membership, grassroots development, and annual scholarships awarded to surfers in need.
The organizing committee for the 2020 Games in Tokyo announced on 22 June 2015 that surfing was among the sports shortlisted for inclusion at the 2020 Summer Olympics. On August 3, 2016, during the 129th IOC Session at the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games, the IOC unanimously voted to include five new sports, among them surfing, to the sports program of the Tokyo 2020 Games.
Surfing was included in the Tokyo 2020 Games on a one-off basis, and the ISA now has shifted their focused towards securing surfing's inclusion in the next editions of the Olympics, including Paris 2024 and LA 2028.
Olympic Qualification Process
On March 16th, 2018, the International Surfing Association (ISA) welcomed the release by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) of the approved qualification system for Surfing’s Olympic debut at Tokyo 2020, ensuring the participation of the world’s best professional surfers as well as promoting universal opportunities for surfers from around the world at the Games.
The key elements of the qualification system are as follows:
- 20 men, 20 women.
- Maximum of 2 surfers per gender per National Olympic Committee (NOC).
- Qualification spots will be earned on an individual basis, by name.
- In accordance with IOC guidelines, the qualification events have been determined in hierarchical order of qualification, as further explained below; If two surfers of a gender have qualified through the first hierarchical order, that NOC will not be able to qualify more surfers of that gender through qualifying events lower in hierarchical order.
- All surfers selected by their respective National Federations for their national teams must participate in 2019 and 2020 ISA World Surfing Games in order to be eligible for Olympic qualification. The final details of the eligibility requirements are still under review by the ISA and the IOC.
The hierarchical order of qualification are as follows:
- 2019 World Surf League Championship Tour: First 10 eligible men and first 8 eligible women.
- 2020 ISA World Surfing Games: First 4 eligible men and first 6 eligible women.
- 2019 ISA World Surfing Games: 4 men and 4 women selected based on their continent. Top finishing eligible surfer of each gender from Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania.
- 2019 Pan American Games: First eligible man and first eligible woman in the surfing competitions.
- Host nation slot: One man and one woman slot will be guaranteed for the host nation of Japan, unless already filled through the above hierarchies. Should athletes from Japan qualify regularly, their slots will be reallocated to the highest ranked eligible surfers from the 2020 World Surfing Games.
To see the full Qualification Process for Surfing in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, click here.
ISA World Events
The ISA runs world events across all disciplines of surfing. ISA world events include:
- ISA World Surfing Games
- ISA World Junior Surfing Championship
- ISA World SUP and Paddleboard Championship
- ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship
- ISA World Longboard Surfing Championship
- ISA World Bodyboard Championship
- ISA World Masters Surfing Championship
- ISA World Kneeboard Championship
ISA World Surfing Games
The ISA World Surfing Games is an Olympic style team competition that gathers National Delegations from around the world. Each team can field up to three men and three women. The surfers compete for individual medals and the coveted Fernando Aguerre World Team Trophy, named for and donated by the ISA President.
The event was first held in 1964 in Manly, Australia under the name 'ISA World Surfing Championships.'
Stemming from the global growth of Surfing spurred by inclusion in the Olympic Games, the 2017 edition of the ISA World Surfing Games broke the record for country participation. The previous record was set in 1996 when 36 nations graced the shores of Huntington Beach, USA, but in Biarritz 47 countries competed, shattering the record.
Many nations had representation in the event for the first time in history in 2017, including Afghanistan, China, Chinese Taipei, Greece, Senegal and South Korea.
|Year||Gold Medal Country||Event location|
|2016||Peru||Jacó, Costa Rica|
|2015||Costa Rica||Popoyo, Nicaragua|
|2014||Peru||Punta Rocas, Peru|
|2013||South Africa||Playa Santa Catalina, Panama|
|2011||Australia||Playa Venao, Panama|
|2010||Peru||Punta Hermosa, Peru|
|2009||USA||Playa Hermosa, Costa Rica|
|2017||Open Men||Jhony Corzo||MEX|
|2017||Open Women||Pauline Ado||FRA|
|2016||Open Men||Leandro Usuna||ARG|
|2016||Open Women||Tia Blanco||USA|
|2015||Open Men||Noe Mar McGonagle||CRC|
|2015||Open Women||Tia Blanco||USA|
ISA World Junior Surfing Championship
The ISA hosted its first World Junior Surfing Championship in 1980 in Biarritz, France, where legendary surfer Tom Curren became the first ISA World Junior Champion, helping to launch his successful career. The event was held as a division of the ISA World Surfing Games until 2003, when it was held as a stand-alone event for the first time in Durban, South Africa.
Historically, the ISA World Junior Surfing Championship has served as a glimpse into the future stars of the sport. Past ISA World Junior Champions include the 2014 WSL Champion Gabriel Medina (BRA, 2010), Tatiana Weston-Webb (HAW, 2014, 2013), Filipe Toledo (BRA, 2011), Tyler Wright (AUS, 2010, 2009), Alejo Muniz (BRA, 2008), Laura Enever (AUS, 2008), Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS, 2007), Julian Wilson (AUS, 2006), Owen Wright (AUS, 2006), Stephanie Gilmore (AUS, 2005, 2004), Matt Wilkinson (AUS, 2004), Jordy Smith (RSA, 2003) and Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA, 2015).
|Year||Gold Medal Country||Event location|
|2015||USA||Oceanside, California, USA|
|2013||Australia||Playa Jiquiliste, Nicaragua|
|2012||Hawaii||Playa Venao, Panama|
ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship
The ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship was created to give surfers with physical challenges an opportunity to compete and display their talents in a Paralympic-style, world-class competition.
The event has experienced unprecedented growth since the inaugural edition in 2015. The World Championship has spurred growth of the sport around the world, with nations such as France, Australia, Chile, Brazil, USA, Hawaii and South Africa holding National Championships of their own to select their National Teams to bring to California.
The 2017 edition shattered participation records with 109 athletes from 26 countries, more than a 50% increase from the inaugural edition of the event in 2015.
ISA World SUP and Paddeboard Championship
The ISA World SUP and Paddleboard Championship is an Olympic-style, team competition that combines the disciplines of SUP Surfing, SUP Racing and Paddleboard Racing. The athletes compete for individual Gold Medals and the Club Waikiki-Peru ISA World Team Champion Trophy awarded to the team that wins the Gold Medal.
The 2017 edition of the event was the first to feature gender equality across all divisions, reflective of the rapid growth of women’s SUP racing and surfing.
Authority and Development of StandUp Paddle (SUP)
The ISA has been the organizer of the sole World Championship for SUP and Paddleboard since 2012. The event was first held in Peru (2012, 2013), with following editions held in Nicaragua (2014), Mexico (2015), Fiji (2016), and Denmark (2017).
Through development programs, scholarships for young SUP athletes, and promoting Championships at the national level, SUP has experienced explosive growth under the ISA’s guidance, which can be observed in the participation levels seen in the World Championship that have nearly quadrupled since its inception.
The ISA presented both Surfing and SUP to the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee for inclusion in the Olympic Sports Program. Tokyo 2020 only elected Surfing to be included in the Games and not SUP, however achievements such as inclusion in the 2019 Pan American Games and 2017 Central American Games have added momentum to the ISA’s push for inclusion in the 2024 Olympics.
The ISA Executive Committee is composed of the ISA President, ISA Executive Director and four Vice Presidents. Its mission is to define ISA strategies and plans of action, “For a Better Surfing Future.” The Executive Committee works with the ISA staff throughout the year to develop future plans.
Current Executive Committee (as of April 2018):
ISA Athletes' Commission
On April 24, 2018 the ISA announced the formation of a new Athletes’ Commission to ensure that athletes’ opinions are heard at the highest level of governance in Surfing, StandUp Paddle (SUP), and all surf-related disciplines.
France’s Justine Dupont, who has medaled across three ISA disciplines (Shortboard, Longboard, and SUP), has been appointed the Chair of the commission. Dupont earned Team Gold at the 2017 ISA World Surfing Games and individual Silver in SUP Surfing at the 2017 ISA World SUP and Paddleboard Championship.
Barbara Kendall (NZL), ISA Vice President, Chair of the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) Athletes’ Commission, and five-time Olympian serves as the Ex Officio of the commission.
The full ISA Athletes’ Commission consists of the following members:
Justine Dupont (FRA)
Barbara Kendall (NZL)
Dylan Lightfoot (RSA)
Alana Nichols (USA)
Masatoshi Ohno (JPN)
Casper Steinfath (DEN)
Miguel Tudela (PER)
Ella Williams (NZL)
The ISA has 103 Member Nations on all continents of the globe.
|Wave Riders Association of Afghanistan|
|Djazair Surf Club (CSG Surf Section)|
|Asociación de Surf Argentina (ASA)|
|Aruba Surf Association (ARUSURF)|
|Austrian Surfing - Österreichischer Wellenreitverband|
|Bahamas Surfing Association (BASA)|
|Barbados Surfing Association|
|Belgian Surfing Federation|
|Confederação Brasileira de Surf, CBSurf|
|Bulgarian Extreme Water Sports Association|
|Canadian Surfing Association|
|Skibo Surf Club|
|Cayman Islands||Cayman Islands Surfing Association|
|Asociacion Chilena de Surf|
|Chinese Extreme Sports Association|
|Chinese Taipei Surfing Association|
|Asociacion Colombiana de Surf (ACS)|
|Federación de Surf de Costa Rica|
|Ceska Federace Stand Up Paddle (CFSUP)|
|North Atlantic Surfing Association (NASA)|
|Federacion Dominicana de Surf (FEDOSURF)Dubai Surfing Association|
|Federación Ecuatoriana de Surf|
|Federación Salvadorena de Surf|
|Fiji Surfing Association|
|Finland||Finnish SUP and Surf Federation|
|Fédération Française de Surf|
|Gambia Swimming and Water Sports Association|
|Deutscher Wellenreit Verband (DWV)|
|Ghana Surfing Association|
|Surfing Great Britain|
|Greek Surfing Association|
|Guahan Napu Inc. (Guam Surf & Bodyboard Association)|
|Guatemala Surfing Association (ASOSURF)|
|Hawaii Amateur Surfing Association (HASA)|
|Hong Kong Stand Up Paddle Board Association (HKSUPBA)|
|Hungarian Surf Association|
|Surfing Federation of India|
|Indonesian Surfing Association|
|Iran||I.R. Iran Surfing Association|
|Irish Surfing Association|
|Israel Surfing Association|
|Federazione Italiana Surfing (FISURF)|
|Côte d'Ivoire Surfing Association|
|Jamaica Surfing Association|
|Nippon Surfing Association|
|Kiribati Surfing Association|
|Korea Surfing Association|
|Latvian Stand Up Paddle Association|
|Lebanon Surf & Sport|
|Liberian Surfing Federation|
|Lithuania||Lithuanian Surfing Association|
|Madagascar Yachting, Rowing, Canoeing, and Surfing Squadron Federation|
|Malaysia Surfing Association|
|Maldives Surfing Association|
|Federación Mexicana de Surfing, A.C.|
|Federation Royale Marocaine de Surf et Bodyboard (FRMSB)|
|Namibia Surfing Association|
|Nauru||Nauru Surf Club|
|Nepal||Nepal National Surfing Association|
|Holland Surfing Association|
|Surfing New Zealand Inc.|
|Nicaragua Surfing Association|
|Nigeria Surfing Federation|
|Norway||Norwegian Surfing Club|
|Asociación Panameña de Surf|
|Surfing Association of Papua New Guinea|
|Federación Peruana de Tabla|
|Republic of the Philippines Surfing Association|
|Polskie Stowarzyszenie Surfingu|
|Federação Portuguesa de Surf|
|Puerto Rico Surfing Federation|
|Russian Surfing Federation|
|Canoeing and Surfing Federation of São Tomé|
|Scotland||Scottish Surfing Federation|
|Federation Senegalaise de Surf|
|Sierra Leone||Sierra Leone Surfing Association|
|Surfing Association of Singapore|
|Slovak Surfing Association|
|Surf Zveza Slovenije|
|Somali Surfing Association|
|Surfing South Africa|
|Federeración Española de Surf|
|Sri Lanka||Surfing Federation of Sri Lanka|
|Swedish Surfing Association|
|Swiss Surfing Association|
|Federation Tahitienne de Surf|
|Surfing Association of Trinidad & Tobago|
|Turkish American Sports Club|
|Dubai Surfing Association|
|United States Virgin Islands||United States Virgin Islands Surfing Association|
|Union de Surf del Uruguay (USU)|
|Vanuatu Surfing Association|
|Federación Venezolana de Surfing|
|Welsh Surfing Federation|
ISA Recognized International Surfing Organizations
Honorary Life Members
Awards and Honors
Somewhat in line with the tradition of the Olympic Games a gold, silver, bronze and copper medals are awarded to the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th placed athletes who compete for the honor to represent their country and national colors, in the true nature of surfing's aloha spirit and fair play.
2014 World Champions
Peru Crowned 2014 World Team Champion, Argentina’s Leandro Usuna Wins The Gold Medal In Men’s, Peru’s Anali Gomez Wins the Gold Medal In Women’s and Peru Wins The ISA Aloha Cup With Incredible Waves At Punta Rocas, Peru
ISA 50th Anniversary World Surfing Games
Overall Team Results
Peru 11,402 points, (Champion Gold Medal) Australia - 11,340 points, (Silver Medal) Argentina - 10,922 points, (Bronze Medal) Costa Rica - 9,508 points, (Copper Medal) Ecuador - 8,330 points South Africa - 8,268 points Chile - 7,830 points Puerto Rico - 6,720 points Japan - 6,540 points Panama - 6,400 points New Zealand - 6,352 points Mexico - 6,340 points Uruguay - 5,760 points Colombia - 5,540 points Switzerland - 4,560 points Scotland - 3,952 points Tahiti - 3,756 points Russia - 3,456 points Venezuela - 2,520 points Israel - 2,280 points Turkey - 1,152 points Dubai - 720 points
- . Leandro Usuna (ARG), Gold Medal
- . Anthony Fillingim (CRI), Silver Medal
- . Shane Holmes (AUS), Bronze Medal
- . Nicholas Squires (AUS), Copper Medal
- . Anali Gomez (PER), Gold Medal
- . Dominic Barona (ECU), Silver Medal
- . Philippa Anderson (AUS), Bronze Medal
- . Jessica Grimwood (AUS), Copper Medal
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- ISA About (accessed 28 April 2011)
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- "ISA Member Directory". International Surfing Association. Retrieved August 28, 2014.
- "Member Directory". International Surfing Association. Retrieved 19 June 2015.
- "Peru wins the ISA 50th Anniversary World Surfing Games". Retrieved 19 June 2015.
- "2017 ISA World Surfing Games - Biarritz, France. May 20-28". 2017 ISA World Surfing Games. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- Carlos Escaba. "Peru Wins Team Gold at ISA's World Surfing Games - The Inertia". The Inertia. Retrieved 19 June 2015.
- "Peru's Gomez gets gold at Claro Isa 50th Anniversary World Surfing Games". Retrieved 19 June 2015.