2021 Pismo Beach ISA World Para Surfing Championship Officially Opens with Record Participation

December 6th, 2021

The largest ever edition of the ISA World Para Surfing Championship kicked off today at the Pismo Beach Pier

Pismo Beach, California, U.S. – December 6th 2021

134 athletes representing 24 nations and 9 different Para Surfing Sport Classes descended on the beautiful stretch of California’s Central Coast with one goal in mind, to bring home gold for themselves and their teams.

The men and women that make up the diverse field are set to showcase precisely why this championship is such an energizing and infectious gathering. A variety of physical abilities provide the platform for an incredible display of surfing as much more than just a sport.

The Parade of Nations kicked off the colorful Opening, with flags from across the world filling Pismo Beach Pier Plaza, while the ISA’s signature Sands of the World Ceremony blended collections from iconic beaches into one container, symbolizing the gathering of para surfers in peace.

Representatives from the local indigenous yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini Northern Chumash tribe welcomed the athletes to their traditional lands, providing a prayer and blessing for all gathered.

National Teams in the parade towards the opening ceremony. Photo: ISA / Ben Reed

ISA President Fernando Aguerre declared “The ocean doesn’t care about the color of your skin, gender, age or physical condition. Enjoy this event and carry high the torch of Para Surfing around the world so more people come to the water.”

“I have the highest respect and recognition for what you surfers do.  You are the ambassadors, not just of para surfing, but of people with different physical abilities.”

Standing in front of his home beach, President and Founder of AmpSurf, Dana Cummings shared an emotional welcome announcing, “I’ve already won a gold medal today, to have you all here, I’m so blessed.”

Dana Cummings from AmSurf in his hometown at the opening ceremony Photo: ISA / Ben Reed

Pismo Beach Mayor Ed Waage furthered the sentiment, letting the participants know that they are all champions for making the cut of this elite level event, before officially declaring it open.

Over the coming days, first class athletes, including multiple previous world champions, will share their talent and their story. The sixth edition marks the first time the championship will see a change of venue after many successful years in La Jolla, California.

While the beach itself will provide an amazing backdrop for the event, a full live broadcast can be found online at isasurf.org for spectators from around the world.


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