The world’s best adaptive surfers are set to gather in La Jolla, California for the third annual Stance ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship presented by Vissla and the City of San Diego from November 29 – December 3.
Here are the 10 things you need to know about this landmark edition of the event:
- The Growth of Adaptive Surfing
The Stance ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship 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 is expected to shatter participation records with more than 100 athletes from 25 countries, more than a 50% increase from the inaugural edition of the event in 2015.
- How to Watch the Event Live Online
The World Championship will be streamed live on www.isaworlds.com from November 30 – December 3. Visit the official event website for results, photos, videos and news pertaining to the competition.
- Paralympic Ambitions
The 2017 edition of the event will go down in history as the first to take place after the ISA received recognition from the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in July of this year. IPC recognition was the first crucial step forward in the path towards applying for inclusion in the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.
The ISA has now officially submitted its ‘declaration of intent’ to the IPC, sticking to its commitment to work towards Para Surfing’s Paralympic inclusion.
- Stance – The Title Sponsor + the Supporters
Stance, an innovative, industry-leading lifestyle brand and Title Sponsor of the 2016 edition of the event, has continued their dedicated support of Adaptive Surfing and the ISA and renewed as Title Sponsor for two more years, through 2019.
Follow Stance on social media to get their inside perspective of the competition:
The event also has the dedicated support of Vissla and the City of San Diego event as presenting sponsors for the second consecutive year and Challenged Athletes Foundation as a Gold level sponsor.
- The Divisions & Gender Equality
The 2017 Stance ISA World Adaptive Surfing Championship will be the first to feature Women’s Divisions, as the ISA continues their push for gender equality across the sports of Adaptive Surfing, Surfing and SUP. Of the six divisions that classify athletes based on their physical challenges, five will feature enough women participation to merit separate divisions and crown the first Women Adaptive Surfing World Champions.
The divisions will be as follows:
- AS-1 (Surfers who ride in a standing or kneeling position) – two athletes
- AS-2 (Surfers who ride in a standing or kneeling position) – two athletes
- AS-3 (Surfers who ride in a seated position on a wakeski) – one athlete
- AS-4 (Surfers who ride in a prone position) – one athlete
- AS-5 (Surfers who ride in a non-standing position and need assistance to paddle into waves) – one athlete
- AS-VI (Surfers who have a visual impairment) – one athlete
- The Champions
The 2016 edition crowned six individual World Champions across four continents and the historic first-ever Team World Champion. The defending Gold Medalists are the following:
- AS-1 – Anthony Smyth (RSA)
- AS-2 – Mark ‘Mono’ Stewart (AUS)
- AS-3 – Fellipe Lima (BRA)
- AS-4 – Bruno Hansen (DEN)
- AS-5 – Davi Teixeira (BRA)
- AS-VI – Aitor Francesena (ESP)
- Team – Brazil
- Social Media
The ISA will be posting live updates, photos and videos from the competition on social media. Follow along on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat and don’t forget use the official hashtags #ISAworlds, #InspiredSurfers and #theuncommonthread.
- Adaptive Surfing Clinic and Symposium
The Stance ISA Adaptive Surfing clinic presented by Challenged Athletes Foundation will be held at La Jolla Shores on Wednesday, November 29. The goal of the clinic is to promote participation in the sport for beginning to intermediate adaptive surfers with instruction from top adaptive surfers and qualified instructors as well as to grow female participation.
Additionally, the ISA will hold an Adaptive Surfing Symposium aimed at building on the profile and platform of the World Championship to raise awareness, align efforts to further develop the sport, and continue the conversation about how Surfing can play an ongoing and vital role in enriching the lives of physically challenged athletes.
- The Schedule
The schedule of events will be as follows:
Wednesday, November 29
- 9am – 1pm: Stance ISA Adaptive Surfing Clinic presented by Challenged Athletes Foundation at La Jolla Shores
- 2-4pm: Opening Ceremony at Kellogg Park (La Jolla Shores)
Thursday, November 30 – Sunday December 3
- 8am – 4:30pm: World Championship competition at La Jolla Shores
- The Mission
The Stance 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.
Recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as the world governing body for Surfing, the ISA’s mission is to create a better world through Surfing. This is accomplished through annual World Championships for surfers representing their countries, development of Adaptive Surfing, membership development, educational programs, scholarship distribution and preparing for Surfing’s participation in the Olympic Games.
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).