about ISF

Skyrunning – the Federation

Where earth meets sky, at Livigno SkyMarathon, Italian Alps. ©iancorless.com

The International Skyrunning Federation represents the governing authority of skyrunning – mountain running above 2,000m over extremely technical terrain. Three disciplines define the sport which are not just based on distance, but vertical climb and technical difficulty:  Sky, SkyUltra and Vertical.

The principal aims of the Federation are the direction, regulation, promotion, and development of skyrunning on a worldwide basis.

An updated list of members, Associates and Aspirants Members can be found here. The Federation is a Unit Member of the UIAA.

Among the events sanctioned and coordinated by the ISF are the annual Skyrunner® World SeriesSkyrunner® National Series; the annual Youth Skyrunning World Championships; the Continental Championships; the biennial World Championships; the VK OPEN Championships and the Vertical World Circuit® (skyscraper racing).

Bearing in mind the geographical, logistical and physical limitations of such a challenging sport, the following figures illustrate the dimension in numbers:

  • more than 300 official races in 53 countries
  • 95,000+ athletes participate in the official races annually
  • 65 countries represented in competitions

An important research project has accompanied the sport since its inception in 1992. Unique physiological and psychological studies were carried out by the FSA (Federation for Sport at Altitudein collaboration with universities and institutes on athletes in the field and in the laboratory.

The work of the ISF commissions includes laying down regulations for both athletes and organisers: selecting and coordinating races for the calendar; research and anti-doping; giving a voice to athletes; international communication and addressing environment issues. The Technical Commission is active in developing product to the highest safety standards with manufacturers and in collaboration with the UIAA.