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IFDS is one of the International Sports Federations (IFs) which cater for disabled athletes and is recognized by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC).

What Is IFDS?

The vision of IFDS (International Association for Disabled Sailing) is to establish sailing as the premier sport for people with disabilities world-wide. Our aim is to promote equity of access, to provide opportunities to excel and to foster empowerment for sailors with disabilities.

In the interests of furthering and developing sailing for people with disabilities, the old ISAF Disabled Sailing Committee was disbanded in November 2000, and IFDS became directly responsible to ISAF. At that time, ISAF authorized IFDS to be responsible for disabled sailing around the world.

Working in partnership with its members and ISAF, and affiliated to IPC, IFDS promotes all aspects of sailing for people with all types and degrees of disability. This includes physical as well as intellectual disabilities, vision, and learning difficulties, and covers all aspects of sailing, from recreation to training to competition at all levels.


  • the promotion of disabled sailing internationally;
  • communicating with the International Sailing Federaton (ISAF) and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC);
  • managing the classification of disabled athletes;
  • managing sailing at the Paralympic Games
  • developing the IFDS International Functional Classification System and the IFDS Race Management Manual;
  • the training of classifiers;
  • the development of the sport around the world.

The IFDS Family

IFDS currently consists of 37 member nations, called Recognized National Authorities (RNAs) who are its princple members, and responsible for the decision-making process that governs the disabled sailing world.

Every November, the IFDS family gathers at the IFDS Annual General meeting to discuss issues relating to disabled sailing.

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