World University Championships & the Universiades

World University Championships & the Universiades

Brief History

The World University Championships are conducted by the International University Sport Federation (FISU).

FISU’s main responsibility is the supervision of both Summer and Winter Universiades as well as the World University Championships.

The following description is taken from the FISU website.

The World University Championships

The other important sport events of FISU are the World University Championships. The spreading of the university sport in the world created a new series of meetings and competitions to complete the program of the Universiade. FISU supports the competitions which represent the continuity of university sport and allows the federation to be better known.

In 2004, FISU organised 25 World University Championships that attracted 4,845 participants from a total of 186 (of which 90 different) countries. For 2006, FISU has already attributed 28 WUCs.

WUC Sports Program: Archery – Badminton – Baseball – Beach Volleyball – Bridge – Chess – Cross Country – Cycling – Equestrian – Flat Water Canoeing – Floorball – Futsal – Golf – Handball – Field Hockey – Judo – Karate – Match Racing – Orienteering – Rowing – Rugby 7 – Sailing – Shooting – Softball – Squash – Table Tennis – Taekwondo – Triathlon – Wild Water Canoeing – Waterskiing – Woodball – Wrestling

The Universiades

The Universiade is an international sporting and cultural festival which is staged every two years in a different city and which is second in importance only to the Olympic Games.

The Summer Universiade consists of 12 compulsory sports (Athletics – Basketball – Fencing – Football – Gymnastics – Judo – Swimming – Diving – Water Polo – Table Tennis – Tennis – Volleyball) and up to three optional sports chosen by the host country. The record figures are 9,006 participants in Bangkok, Thailand in 2007 and 174 countries in Daegu, Korea in 2003.

The Winter Universiade consists of 7 compulsory sports (Alpine skiing – Snowbaording – Nordic skiing composed of jump, cross country & combined – Curling – Ice Hockey – Short-Track Speed Skating – Figure Skating – Biathlon) and one or two optional sports also chosen by the host country, and gathered a record of 2,511 participants in Torino, Italy in 2007 and a record number of 50 countries in Innsbruck, Austria in 2005.

The World University Games have a tradition dating from the early 1920s, a history which is not as old as the Olympic Games nor as recent as the Commonwealth Games. The first World University Games were held in Parn 1923 and have been conducted in their current form since the 1959 Games in Turin.

Eligibility to compete depends on an athlete being between 17 and 28 and undertaking a university or college degree or diploma course (or who graduated in the year prior to the Games).

Australia was first represented in the 1967 Games in Tokyo where Ralph Doubell won a gold medal in the 800m which was a prelude to his gold in the same event the following year at the Mexico Olympics. Other Australian medallists include 1992 Olympians Alison Inverarity in the high jump and Shaun Creighton in the steeple chase. Previously Rob Woodhouse, Michelle Ford, John Sieben, Susie Woodhouse and Mark Kerry, all in swimming, have won gold.

Australia was been represented in rowing in 1987, 1989 and 1991 with distinction – but no medals.

Details of Representation at WUC

Details of Representation at the Summer Universiades

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information provided, errors may exist. Please send advice of any errors or inaccuracies by email to:

Also your comments, suggestions and photos are sought to enhance this site.

The ideas and format for this history originated from the Olympic Rowing and World Senior Rowing Championship histories written by Andrew Guerin and Margot Foster in 1991, 1992 & 1993 for the Australian team handbooks. Andrew Guerin has developed and extended the histories to the current format in 2004 for publication in 2004 and 2005 and acknowledges the ongoing assistance of Margot Foster.

Steve Roll has been an invaluable contributor to the website in locating errors and finding Christian names of rowers. His superb work is acknowledged.

© Andrew Guerin – 2004-2018
These contents of this history are copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of private study, research, criticism or review, as permitted by the Copyright Act, no part may be reproduced by any process without written permission.

Disclaimer: Whilst extensive efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information supplied, the editors take no responsibility for any loss or damage whatsoever arising from inaccuracies contained in this work.

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