World Games

Publication date: 05 Sep 2022

About the World Games

The World Games are an international event in sports not included in the program of the Olympic Games. They are held every four years. The sporting event is organized by the International World Games Association (IWGA). The World Games always last 11 days. In contrast to other multi-sport events, the World Games do not oblige the host cities to build new sporting facilities for the Games.

Official website of the International World Games Association

2022 World Games

The 11th International World Games were held from 7 to 17 July 2022 in Birmingham, Alabama, USA. 30 official sports were represented at the games. A total of 3,600 athletes from 110 countries took part in the event.

The Birmingham World Games were the first event in the history of the World Games to include para-sport – wheelchair rugby.

History of the World Games

The idea of a multi-sport event for non-Olympic sport was discussed in 1979. The non-Olympic federations desired to create their own sporting event as a way of further promoting their sports.

In 1981, the first World Games were held in Santa Clara, USA. 1265 athletes competed in 18 sports. As time passed, the World Games program expanded by more than 2 times.

Such sports as biathlon, taekwondo and triathlon, which were earlier included in the program of the World Games, nowadays are included in the program of the Olympics.

Previous World Games winners

The year Venue Results/ Medal standings 
2022 Birmingham, Alabama, USA 1st place – Germany (24 gold, 7 silver, 16 bronze)

2nd place – USA (16 gold, 18 silver, 10 bronze)

3rd place – Ukraine (16 gold, 12 silver, 17 bronze)

2017 Wroclaw, Poland 1st place – Russia (28 gold, 21 silver, 14 bronze)

2nd place – Germany (18 gold, 10 silver, 14 bronze)

3rd place – France (14 gold, 14 silver, 15 bronze)

2013 Cali, Colombia 1st place – Italy (18 gold, 13 silver, 18 bronze)

2nd place – Russia (17 gold, 24 silver, 12 bronze)

3rd place – France (16 gold, 11 silver, 13 bronze)

2025 World Games

According to preliminary information, the 12th World Games will be held in the Chinese city of Chengdu. The exact date of the event is not yet known.

Keep an eye on the dates of the World Games and other events in our Sports Events Calendar.

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