History | World Air Sports Federation

At the start of the 20th century, the pioneering flights of pilots such as Clément Ader, the Wright brothers and Santos-Dumont, the proliferation of aeronautical competitions and increasingly rapid technological advances mark the real birth of the age of aviation. modern.

A small group of men recognized the growing need for an international federation to coordinate and guide the rapidly growing aviation activity.

On June 10, 1905, Count Henri de la Vaulx, vice-president of the Aéroclub de France, major Moedebeck of the German Airship League and Fernand Jacobs, president of the Aéroclub de Belgique, presented to the Olympic Congress in Brussels their proposal for “Fédération Aéronautique Internationale”. The delegates warmly received the idea, and in support of the Olympic Congress adopted the following resolution:“This Congress, recognizing the particular importance of aeronautics, expresses the desire that in each country, an Association be created to regulate the sport of aviation and that subsequently a Universal Aeronautical Federation be formed to regulate the various meetings. of aviation and advancing the science and sport of aviation. “

On October 12, 1905, an international aeronautical conference was convened in Paris. After two days of debate, the representatives of Belgium, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and the United States adopted the package of the proposed statutes. The Fédération Aéronautique Internationale was founded on October 14, 1905. From its inception, the FAI defined its main objectives as being to“Methodically list the best performances obtained, so that they are known to all; identify their distinctive characteristics in order to allow comparisons; and verify the evidence and thereby ensure that the record holders have unchallenged rights to their titles. “ The statutes also specified that each body with sporting powers (i.e. national members of the FAI) should retain full and autonomous control over its own affairs.

More than a century old, faithful to the decisions of its founding fathers, but also because the principles established then remain valid, the Statutes of the FAI still reflect the objectives defined in 1905.

However, the emergence of new technologies and modern equipment, and the birth of entirely new air sports disciplines have meant that the FAI’s sphere of involvement has widened – and continues to expand. New goals are adopted to reflect the evolution of society and the aspirations of those who practice air sports.

The main objective of the FAI is the development in the world of sports aviation and astronautical activities.

The current Statutes describe in detail its specific objectives:

  • highlight the essentially international spirit of aeronautics as a powerful instrument to bring all peoples together in mutual understanding and friendship regardless of political, racial or religious considerations, thus helping to create international goodwill and thus to build a better and more peaceful world;
  • bring together the air sports men and women of the world in an international competition;
  • educate young people through sport in a spirit of mutual understanding and friendship;
  • coordinate the separate efforts of its members to advance aeronautics and astronautics around the world;
  • protect and safeguard the interests of its members in the use of airspace;
  • provide a forum for the exchange of information and the discussion of common problems with other elements of civil aviation.

To achieve these goals and meet the needs of each air sport and field of activity, the organizational structure of the FAI continues to evolve. From time to time, new Commissions are created.

Currently, the ISP includes the following:

  • The General Conference, the supreme decision-making body, which adopts the FAI statutes and regulations – the cornerstones of the FAI;
  • The Executive Council, the main executive body of the FAI, responsible for implementing the decisions of the General Conference and directing the day-to-day operations of the FAI;
  • Twelve Air Sport Commissions representing, in addition to the General Commission, all 11 air sport disciplines under FAI control: aerobatics, aeromodelling, amateur and experimental construction planes, astronautics records, hot air balloons, drones, general aviation, flying in sailing, hang-gliding and paragliding, microlights and paramotors, rotorcraft, parachuting;
  • Three Technical Commissions which control non-sporting activities: education, medico-physiological and environmental issues.

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