ISA President Featured On Top Olympic Media
We are excited to share with you below an article that appeared yesterday in the influential online media outlet – Around The Rings – specializing in Olympic news.
The headline “Olympic Program Within Reach for Surfing” is exciting in itself and reflects the new and growing momentum we have gathered following Fernando’s amazing international outreach in the Olympic world. In fact, this story comes off the heals of Fernando’s recent trip to Nanjing, China for the Youth Olympic Games where he was able to meet with top Olympic leaders and continue to press our case.
Given the online nature of this article and the importance for us of creating a viral campaign, we have included the link to the story and strongly encourage you to promote, like, Retweet and post this story across all your social media platforms.
— Around the Rings (@AroundTheRings) September 11, 2014
Source: Around The Rings.
The president of the surfing federation says a number of the hurdles to his sport’s inclusion in the Olympic program have been felled in the last few years.
International Surfing Association president Fernando Aguerre has a passion for the sport he has led since 1994, saying he surfs every morning outside his southern California home “before I brush my teeth.”
He believes his sport is as close to an Olympic berth as it has ever been and said attending the Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing was about convincing IOC members of the feasibility of adding surfing to the Olympic program.
“A lot of the IOC members, I need to bring it to them to show them what it is that we can do and what we can do for the Olympic Movement,” said Aguerre, the co-founder of sandal maker Reef.
“Just like snowboard brought a complete new demographic and dynamic to the Winter Games, I’m very confident that surfing could do the same for the Summer Games. We are one of those ultimate youth sports.”
Technology has brought the dream closer to reality as advances in artificial wave machine technology have made the sport more accessible.
Though the machines have been around awhile, Aguerre did not approach the IOC with the technology until about three years ago, saying he wanted something that replicated “the real deal” before making a formal plea to the committee.
“This is something that replicates nature without the limitations of nature,” said Aguerre, adding that advances have brought down costs and allowed the machines to be placed in multi-purpose pools.
The ISA president says he has a much better handle on the international sporting community than he did when he attended his first event, the IF Forum in 2007. He compared it to “the first day in a new school when you don’t know anybody.”
Now, however, Aguerre is comfortable in the meeting atmosphere and looks forward to the continued fight to add surfing to the Summer Olympic program. And while those in other sports like skateboarding have voiced concerns about wanting their sports to be done correctly if added to the Olympics, Aguerre will be happy seeing surfing make it, no matter the form. He said those who enjoy running may run on streets or grass, but they still enjoy seeing the best at the Summer Games.
“The fact that running is on a track in the Olympic, I don’t think it kills any of your passion for running. It’s basically just a different version of running, and you like to see the best runners in the world run so you tune in during the Games and you watch that.”
“You don’t have any ocean or wave-going sport,” Aguerre said of the Olympic program. “There’s nothing like surfing.”
Written by Nick Devlin
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 103 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).