It all started...
It all started…
…..on March 24, 1996, in Riesa (GER), when the IFSA (International Federation of Sports Acrobatics) convened an extraordinary assembly. A pivotal question on the order of the day: is the IFSA ready to merge with the FIG? Nineteen national federations were present – nineteen votes in addition to that of the President. Fifteen were in favour, five opposed. In the hopes of becoming an Olympic sport, the sport moved into a new realm.
On July 17, 1996 at the Congress in Atlanta (USA), IFSA President Stoil Sotirov of Bulgaria invites delegates from the one-hundred and three delegations present to vote in favour of a launch in negotiations toward FIG integration of Sports Acrobatics. The call is heard and with eighty-three votes to one, plus six abstentions, the FIG set out to explore the idea through a Study Commission.
At the FIG Congress of May 23, 1998 in Vilamoura (POR), the same Stoil Sotirov addressed delegates of the seventy-nine federations present, expressing his approval of his discipline’s integration as well as the IFSA – FIG merger. Clearly reaching his audience, the FIG voted in favor, sixty to six; a harbinger of IFSA demise with the close of 1998.
The dissolving of IFSA and subsequent merger agreement was on the order of the day at its VII Congress in Minsk (BLR) on October 27, 1998, parallel to the 15th World Championships.
Twenty-four federations to four approved both, but because of a technicality the first vote was annulled. A final decision was reached in January 1999, where at the same Congress the first ACRO Commission was elected (photo below).
At the FIG head office in Moutier (SUI), on April 8, 1999, FIG President Prof. Bruno Grandi and Stoil Sotirov signed a document that would seal the future of Sports Acrobatics to that of the FIG.
The 16th and first World Championships of the FIG era were held in Ghent (BEL) in 1999.
A final act played out on November 13, 2000 at the FIG General Assembly, convened in Marrakech (MAR) to statutorily approve the integration of Sports Acrobatics.
Moutier, April 8, 1999: Mr Grandi and Mr Sotirov sign the document that would seal the destinies of Sports Acrobatics and the FIG.
Moutier, April 10, 1999: First visit of the FIG ACRO Commission. 1- Yuri Stepchenko (UKR), President; 2- Kurt Becker (GER), Vice-President; 3- Dr Patricia Wade (GBR), Secretary; 4- Tonya Case (USA), Member; 5- Victor Pestov (RUS), Member; 6- Konrad Zielinski (POL), Member and Gizela; 7- John Atkinson (GBR), FIG Delegate; 8- Norbert Bueche, FIG Secretary General and his Deputy (9) André Gueisbuhler.
The sport had come full circle.
In 2004, the discipline was renamed to Acrobatic Gymnastics.
Acrobatic Gymnastics official pictogram
Updated January 2014