Choshi: natural waves in Japan | Photo: Tanaka Juuyoh/Creative Commons

Tokyo 2020 wants the surfing competition to take place in natural waves. Artificial waves are ruled out, at least until 2024.

Organizers of the Olympic Games have told the International Olympic Committee (IOC) that if the sport of surfing gets its debut in Japan, then wave riders must compete for medals in their natural environment, i.e., the ocean.

The International Surfing Association (ISA) has been using surf pools as a trump card into the Olympics, but the investment needed to build a surf lagoon, and the recent problems in the young technology might have frightened the Tokyo 2020 team.

 "The new wave pool technology remains very much on the surfing agenda and the next generation of wave parks are on their way. It is great to know that surfing is developing and growing on so many different fronts," underlines Fernando Aguerre.

"We are delighted that surfing will take place on natural waves if it is admitted to the Tokyo 2020 Sports Programme. Surfing is hugely popular in Japan and the country has hosted many national and international competitions in a number of beautiful ocean locations. There are some great and thriving beach-based Surfing hotspots to choose from which would be ideal for Olympic surfing."

The ISA wants to "create an amazing beach party atmosphere providing unforgettable memories for athletes, spectators, broadcasters and fans around the world."

Surfing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will take place in the ocean, not in a wave pool. The waiting period runs from July 24 to August 9.

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