Surfing: an Olympic sport since 2016

Surfing in the Olympic Games

On August 3, 2016, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) confirmed surfing in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

All IOC members unanimously approved the proposal to include surfing, for the first time in its history, in the Olympic movement.

Surfers will compete for gold, silver, and bronze medals, at Tsurigasaki Beach, Chiba Prefecture, Japan.

The International Surfing Association (ISA) and the World Surf League (WSL) will work together to design the qualifying scheme.

The Olympic surfing competition will feature 40 surfers – 20 male, and 20 female athletes – from several nations. There will only be a shortboard division.

Today, there are over 25 millions surfers worldwide.

“Duke Kahanamoku’s dream is realized. Surfing makes the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. A wave of goodwill across the world. Congrats to Fernando Aguerre, ISA, and WSL.”
Shaun Tomson, former professional surfer and world surfing champion

“I think it is great the Olympics has recognized surfing because it is such a global sport these days and for the people lucky enough to be competing it will be very prestigious, so I am extremely happy. In four years time I don’t think I will be at the top of my game so I would be honored to be a coach or mentor.”
Mick Fanning, professional surfer and world surfing champion

“Well, it’s about damn time. A huge thank you goes out to the people involved making this happen.”
Jordy Smith, professional surfer

“One of the best days of my life! Surfing at the Olympic Games is now a reality.”
Carlos Burle, professional big wave surfer

“I do believe that everyone that dreams of becoming an athlete, or it is one, dreams of going to the Olympic Games. This was one of my dreams, and now it is a goal. I know the 2016 Olympics hasn’t started yet, but I’m already getting ready for 2020.”
Adriano de Souza, professional surfer and world surfing champion

“Today is a day that will be remembered in history. Surfing will be in the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Congratulations to Fernando Aguerre for all the hard work. Thank you my friend!”
Leonardo Fioravanti, professional surfer

“When people see surfing at the Olympic Games it is going to blow their minds. Whether it is in a wave pool or the ocean is irrelevant, the athleticism, the mindset and the ability to perform under pressure is what makes surfing so unique and I think the worldwide audience will appreciate how we can turn a wave into our own beautiful canvas.”
Layne Beachley, former pro surfer and world surfing champion

“I’m interested to see how things pan out. It will be a positive boost to the sport in some ways.”
Andrew Cotton, professional big wave surfer