International Blind Sports Federation
Capable of everything
Foreword from Jacques Rogge, IOC President Foreword from Phil Craven, IPC President Foreword from Enrique Pérez, IBSA President Champions support IBSA
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Member countries (list)
IBSA Medical Classification
IBSA Web site
One of the fundamental principles of the Olympic Movement is that sport should be open to all and encourage the harmonious development of all individuals through its practice. It is in this spirit that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is supporting the development of sport for the blind and visually impaired, by giving recognition to the International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA).
Since its creation in 1981, the IBSA has continued its efforts for the growth of disabled sport, thus contributing to the universality of sport. Through various events worldwide, the IBSA has helped to underline the important place which sport for those with a disability occupies within the sports community and its progressive integration.
I wish IBSA and its members every success in its future endeavours for the true meaning of Sport for All.
International Olympic Committee.
The International Blind Sports Federation (IBSA) has been a member of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) since its foundation in 1989. From the very first day, co-operation between IPC and IBSA has been extremely fruitful and successful. This is reflected in the high and still growing number of participating elite athletes with a visual impairment in ten sports on the Paralympic programme.
It also shows in other areas, such as in the common efforts in sport development, promotion of sport for athletes with a disability, classification, joint congresses and conferences, to mention just a few. Through IBSA’s national member organizations, it is able to reach out
to all five continents and inform about and develop sport for persons with a visual impairment.
The IPC’s vision is to enable Paralympic athletes to achieve sporting excellence and inspire and excite the world. This has also long become a maxim for IBSA and athletes with a visual impairment. The IPC is very grateful to IBSA for its immense support and contribution towards realizing this vision and achieving this common goal. On behalf of the International Paralympic Committee, I would like to emphasize that we value IBSA as more than just a member of the IPC family. For the IPC, IBSA is a partner and friend. I extend my best wishes to IBSA for continued excellence and growth. Phil Craven MBE,
International Paralympic Committee.
Since IBSA was founded in Paris in 1981 we have been in a constant process of evolution to adapt to the ever-changing world of sports for the blind.
IBSA is registered as a non-profit making, public interest body in Spain, and we are full members of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), where we are the legitimate representatives of sport for the blind.
Our status allows us to provide our movement with a unique identity in order to further develop and promote sports for the blind and visually impaired. We are also committed to providing assistance to our national member organisations in all five continents, especially those organisations in developing countries which have to date been unable to spread the word about blind sports sufficiently within their countries and do not have an established school sports programme for the blind or local and national competition programmes. We in IBSA believe sport is the ideal means to promote the integration of disabled people in general and the blind in particular. Sport can help them overcome their disability by raising their self-esteem and their ability to overcome difficulties, and as an aid to normalisation in their living environment. In short, sport helps to bring about the complete fulfilment of blind and visually impaired athletes.
To achieve our goals, we encourage all blind and visually impaired people to get involved in different sports and physical activities. You too can become a blind athlete and take part in competitions ranging from school sports to elite level championships for the blind and the Paralympic Games.
International Blind Sports Federation.
Three times World Champion with the Brazilian football team – Sweden ’58, Chile ’62 and
Mexico ’70 – FIFA Player of the Century and IOC Athlete of the Century.
“Football’s current position in the civilised world shows that the work carried out over the last hundred years to make the sport more popular and democratic has not been in vain. To a certain extent I feel partly responsible for this. Football has developed to such an extent that it will be difficult for any other sport to equal it, and on several occasions I have witnessed how it can bring together people of different races and unite people of different nationalities in peace.
One of the most emotional moments of my life was when I took part in the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games in Atlanta in 1996. The message we took away from this marvellous festive occasion is that sport is, above all, a force for democracy. I am amazed by the blind football matches I have seen. Watching the players represent their countries with the same patriotism as I always did, I realised that blind football is even more exciting and is a tremendous challenge. The players are a perfect example of how to overcome adversity, turning their difficulties into the incentive they need to win. Sport has played a vital role in the history of nations, and I am convinced the role of Paralympic sport is even more important; besides bringing together visually impaired athletes from all over the world, sport helps people with a visual impairment in their rehabilitation and integration in society and everyday life.
Countries that realise this and make a commitment to develop the potential of people with a disability in all fields, and especially in the field of sport, have much to gain.”
Edson Arantes do Nascimento – Pele