The world’s best National Surfing Teams are set to gather in Miyazaki, Japan September 7-15 to represent their nations and go for Gold at the 2019 ISA World Surfing Games (WSG) presented by Vans.
Here are the ten things you need to know about the upcoming competition:
- Tokyo 2020 qualification
The 2019 World Surfing Games will historically serve as the first edition of the event to directly qualify athletes for Tokyo 2020.
Qualification will be on a continental basis, with the top eligible man and woman from Africa, Asia, Oceania, and Europe earning slots in the Olympic Games. (The Americas’ slots were contested at the Lima 2019 Pan Am Games).
Following the 2019 WSG and Pan American Games, qualification will be completed by the 2019 World Surf League Championship Tour and the 2020 ISA World Surfing Games.
Learn more about the Tokyo 2020 qualification process here.
- Where to tune in
The event will be broadcast live from September 7-15 on www.isasurf.org. Visit the official event page for news, photos, videos, results, and information pertaining to the event.
Fans will also be able to tune in on the ISA’s Facebook page.
For viewers in Japan, the event will be exclusively streamed on Abema TV.
- Elite talent
The world’s top surfers are set to compete in the WSG, forming the strongest National Surfing Teams ever assembled.
The likes of Kelly Slater (USA), Carissa Moore (USA), Julian Wilson (AUS), Stephanie Gilmore (AUS), Jeremy Flores (FRA), Jordy Smith (RSA), Gabriel Medina (BRA), and Tatiana Weston-Webb (BRA) will attempt to bring the Team Gold to their home nation.
View full team rosters here.
- Participation records
Riding the Olympic wave of momentum that has spurred the growth of Surfing on all continents of the globe, a record-breaking 55 nations will compete in 2019 – eight more than the previous record of 47 set at the 2017 edition in Biarritz, France.
240 surfers will surf under their country flags, including a record breaking 103 women (43% of participants), which surpasses the women’s participation record that was set at the 2018 edition.
- New nations
Among the 55 participating nations are four new nations who will compete in the WSG for the first time in history: American Samoa, Lebanon, Sri Lanka, and Thailand.
- Returning Gold Medalists
Both 2018 individual Gold Medalists, Australia’s Sally Fitzgibbons and Argentina’s Santiago Muñiz, will return to Japan to defend their Titles.
Team Japan made history in 2018 by winning their first-ever Team Gold Medal and has fielded a strong team to retain it. Kanoa Igarashi, Shun Murakami, and Hiroto Ohhara, Mahina Maeda, Sara Wakita, and Shino Matsuda will surf for the host nation.
- The history
Originally named the International Surfing Federation World Championships, the World Surfing Games crowned the first Surfing World Champions in Manly Beach, Australia in 1964. The WSG has been crowning champions ever since, with competitions being held on all five continents of the globe.
The WSG was held in Japan in 1990 and 2018. 2019 will mark the third time the event has been held in the land of the rising sun.
- Social media
The ISA will be posting live updates, photos and videos from the competition on social media. Follow along on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and don’t forget use the official hashtag #ISAworlds.
Facebook: International Surfing Association
- The schedule
The tentative schedule for the event is as follows:
- Parade of Nations and Opening Ceremony
- Likely start to Open Women
- Open Women
- Aloha Cup (TBC)
- Open Women
- Start to Open Men
- Finals Open Women
- Open Men competition continues
- Finals Open Men
- Closing Ceremony
- The support
The ISA would like to thank the partners, local organizers in Miyazaki, and supporters of this event, especially Vans, which has led the support as the event’s principle sponsor.
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, Para 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; World StandUp Paddle (SUP, both surfing and racing) and Paddleboard Champions in 2012; and World Para Surfing Champions in 2015.
ISA membership includes the surfing National Federations of 108 countries on five continents. The ISA is presided over by Fernando Aguerre (ARG). The Executive Committee includes four Vice-Presidents Karín Sierralta (PER), Kirsty Coventry (ZIM), Casper Steinfath (DEN) and Barbara Kendall (NZL), Athletes’ Commission Chair Justine Dupont (FRA), Regular Members Atsushi Sakai (JPN) and Jean Luc Arassus (FRA) and ISA Executive Director Robert Fasulo as Ex-officio Member.
Its headquarters are located in La Jolla, California (USA).