The International Surfing Association (ISA) has welcomed the Surfing Cook Islands Association as its 99th and newest Member Federation, further driving the global expansion of the sport.
A newly founded body, the Surfing Cook Islands Association is focused on developing and promoting Surfing and StandUp Paddle [SUP] across the country, encouraging participation at all levels. The organization has also made commitments to:
- Organize and promote regional and national Surfing competitions, exhibitions and meetings for Surfing Cook Islands Members
- Select and prepare Cook Islands surf teams for international competitions
- Cooperate and liaise with international Surfing bodies and associations, environmental organizations and marine focused NGOs
- Preserve the unique culture and bond amongst local surfers, maintaining the respect for one another and the ocean
- Support the ISA in its campaign for inclusion in the Olympic Games and other multisport events
The Association will host the 2016 Cook Islands Winter Open Body Boarding Championships in August and a Surfing Youth Camp will also be organized in the coming months to encourage young people from around the Islands to take up Surfing while also learning the unique cultural values of the sport.
Fernando Aguerre, ISA President, said:
“We’re delighted to welcome Surfing Cook Islands to the ISA family as Surfing and SUP continue to grow and develop around the world. Surfing’s culture and strong values help the sport to create lasting bonds, bringing communities together and creating social opportunities and economic growth – especially in remote island nations such as the Cook Islands.
“The ISA’s aim is to harness the inclusive culture of Surfing to continue to grow participation by offering more development opportunities to young people in different regions through increased access to equipment and a higher standard of coaching. By celebrating the core values of Surfing and making the sport more accessible to all we can help to share the thrill and enjoyment of Surfing.”
Falakiko Drollett, Surfing Cook Islands Association President, said:
“Surfing Cook Islands Association is ecstatic to be confirmed as the 99th member of the International Surfing Association. We look forward to the challenge of international level competition, gaining access to support in best practice through training and scholarship programs for our youth, professionalizing the association and to having a platform to voice our thoughts on the future of Surfing in the international arena.
“Our association is here to grow and develop Surfing as a major sport in the Cook Islands and I’d like to express our appreciation to the ISA for granting our membership. We look forward to a long and successful partnership.”
The International Surfing Association (ISA), founded in 1964, is recognized by the International Olympic Committee as the World Governing Authority for Surfing. The ISA governs and defines Surfing as Shortboard, Longboard & Bodyboarding, StandUp Paddle (SUP) Racing and Surfing, Bodysurfing, Wakesurfing, and all other wave riding activities on any type of waves, and on flat water using wave riding equipment. The ISA crowned its first Men’s and Women’s World Champions in 1964. It crowned the first Big Wave World Champion in 1965; World Junior Champion in 1980; World Kneeboard Champions in 1982; World Longboard Surfing and World Bodyboard Champions in 1988; World Tandem Surfing Champions in 2006; World Masters Champions in 2007; and World StandUp Paddle (SUP, both surfing and racing) and Paddleboard Champions in 2012.
ISA membership includes the surfing National Governing Bodies of 104 countries on five continents. Its headquarters are located in La Jolla, California. It is presided over by Fernando Aguerre (Argentina), first elected President in 1994 in Rio de Janeiro. The ISA’s four Vice-Presidents are Karín Sierralta (PER), Kirsty Coventry (ZIM), Casper Steinfath (DEN) and Barbara Kendall (NZL).