The International Surfing Association (ISA) is pleased to announce its commitment to the United Nations (UN) ‘Sport for Generation Equality Framework’, underlining the ISA’s dedication towards gender equality in sport.
In joining the UN initiative, the ISA will focus efforts according to the following principles to accelerate gender equality and women empowerment:
- Promote women’s leadership and gender equality in governance models
- Prevent and respond to gender-based violence
- Undertake to close the gap in investment in women’s sport and promote equal economic opportunities for women and girls
- Promote women’s equal participation and bias free representation in media
- Provide equal opportunities for girls in sports, physical activity and physical education
The full framework can be found here.
As part of a wide-reaching initiative to promote gender equality in surfing as a whole, the ISA has seen positive progress through ISA Global Events and development programs.
The 2019 ISA World Surfing Games, held in Miyazaki, Japan, featured a record-breaking 103 women competitors who accounted for 43% of the total event participation.
In 2017, the ISA implemented the first women-only Para Surfing divisions in the ISA World Para Surfing Championship due to increased participation and demand, thus crowning the first-ever women Para Surfing World Champions.
Most recently, the ISA offered an online judging course for women with the aim to develop more women judges for ISA World Championships. 127 women from 34 countries participated, receiving instruction from two members of the Tokyo 2020 Judging panel, ISA Technical Director Erik Krammer and ISA/WSL Judge and Longboard Champion Tory Gilkerson.
ISA President Fernando Aguerre said:
“We recognize the critical need for deepened commitment and action from a diverse array of partners from around the globe to promote and push for gender equality, especially in sport.
“The ISA is committed to working collaboratively with our peers and relevant stakeholders to develop, implement and enhance the gender equality agenda in and through sport.
“I am proud of the strides the ISA has taken to promote gender equality through surfing including, but not limited to, equal quota allocation at ISA Events, balanced gender representation on the ISA Executive Committee and ISA Athletes’ Commission, and access to programs that allow greater opportunity for women to learn and develop skills specific to the sport.
“Surfing has made great progress in this regard, but our work is far from over. We will not stop until women surfers truly have the equal access and opportunity that they deserve. This is another step on our mission to make the world a better place through surfing.”
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).