Flying discs & overhead kicks – the next Olympic sports?

For the International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC), Olympic status represented the peak of a remarkable ascent. Founded in 2007, the IFSC emerged from the International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (UIAA) following disagreements about the future of competitive climbing, and whether it could be an organised sport rather than a social pastime.

IFSC President Marco Scolaris admits that he was initially unsure. “I was reluctant in the beginning,” he says. “But I changed my mind because I thought that, as a sport, it can be a powerful social tool. If climbing changed my life for the better, then why not give climbing to the world? Many of my friends didn’t follow this path. We are still friends but we simply see things in a different way.”

For those that did join Scolaris – an initial 57 member federations, now 99 – there was one goal in mind. “The Olympic Games became important because this is where you get the highest possible visibility,” he says. “If…

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