7th TAFISA World Sport for All Games 2021 - Fantastic Success for a Unique Edition!


7th TAFISA World Sport for All Games 2021 - Fantastic Success for a Unique Edition!

22 June 2021

The 7th TAFISA World Sport for All Games 2021, Lisbon, Portugal are over! The hybrid event, a first in the history of TAFISA World Sport for All Games, was a fantastic success! Over the course of 6 days, the international audience connecting to the online platform enjoyed a display of traditional sports and games as well as new sports from over 150 organisations across 50 countries. 

Relive the Games at your own pace! Connect to https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/ to watch the programme and re-watch what went down during the Games. 

On 18 June, participants had the privilege to watch an early sneak peek of the Games and were virtually welcomed by messages from the Organising Committee, Portuguese Institute of Sports and Youth, and Portuguese Sports Confederation, as a warm-up for the event. 


Day 1

The Opening Ceremony took place in Lisbon, Portugal, and was broadcast on 19 June, officially launching Day 1 of the Games.

Alongside performances from Portuguese revered fado singers such as the popular António Pinto Basto and upcoming talent Inês de Vasconcellos, the stage hosted welcome words by organisers and partners of the Games. 

Vitor Pataco, President of the Portuguese Institute of Sports and Youth, addressed the hybrid format of this edition: 

"We believe that the holding of these World Games and this virtual format, which was a challenge for everyone, will still leave an important legacy for the entire world. This will have a lasting impact since all the records will be available on an electronic platform with the possibility for people to visit or revisit even after the Games are finished. "

Vitor Pataco and Nuno Delgado declared the Games open
Vitor Pataco (left) and Nuno Delgado (right) officially declared the Games open on 19 June


Carlos Paula Cardoso, President of Portuguese Sports Confederation, followed: 

"The Games are special games. They're Sport for All Games. The 7th TAFISA World Sport for All Games represent and include within them the sport component, the cultural component and also the historical component of civilizations throughout the world. [...] We are here today for the sake of sports and general culture."

Uri Schaefer, President of ICSSPE, highlighted: 

"There are benefits to host the games using a virtual format. It allows many to attend the event, experience and watch traditional sports and games from all around the world. In this way, the experience of the Games and the participation in them is preserved and creates interest, encourages innovation, and requires creativity for all those who wish to present their cultural and sport for all activities, and share experiences from their country and from the organisation they represent."

Sari Essayah, IOC Member and Chair of the IOC Sport and Active Society Commission, insisted on the importance of the Games: 

"The IOC and TAFISA have a longstanding relationship with a shared commitment to the value of physical activity and Sport for All. [...] Additionally there are several synergies between the TAFISA Mission 2030 and Olympic Agenda 2020+5 which demonstrates again these shared values now and continuing in the future. [...]
While this edition is virtual, I am confident that it will deliver inspiration and excitement like past events. Now more than ever, it is the perfect time for an event like this. Whether at the elite level, demonstrated during the Olympic Games, or at the grassroots Sport for All level. The TAFISA World Sport for All Games are a perfect example of inspiration and demonstration both of the sports themselves and the values that sport bring. The IOC is very pleased to offer patronage to these World Sport for All Games. "

Sari Essayah


Sara Massini, Secretary General of ENGSO, continued: 

"Sport is a right and everyone should have the opportunity to do sport. The TAFISA Games is particularly important because it's connecting us, connecting with our culture, connecting with our roots. It's making possible the connection between history, the present and the future. We send greetings on behalf of our President Stefan Bergh and on behalf on ENGSO, we wish you great Games."

Nuno Delgado, Head of Mission of Lisbon European Capital of Sports, representing the Mayor of the Lisbon City Council, underlined the connection between Lisbon and the Games: 

"As Head of Mission of Lisbon European Capital of Sports 2021 and on behalf of our Mayor Fernando Medina, I also want to salute all the everyday champions who will follow this event all over the world. It is quite certain that this need to transform it into a digital initiative is perhaps an opportunity to explore new ways of encouraging the practice of sports an traditional games. The TAFISA World Sport for All Games celebrate diversity and this is also what unites us. The respect for different traditional activities and cultures that make the TAFISA Games a very special event. Lisbon, given its multicultural roots and as the European Capital of Sports, has embraced their organisation with all its might."

Prof. Juho Chang, President of TAFISA, noted:

"Today, this special edition of the Games will introduce new type of event; a hybrid format where we expand our reach to both virtual and physical participants, and celebrate the cultures, traditions, sports and games in a way never seen before. The twenty-four-hour coverage that reaches all time zones will take us through a voyage for a discovery around the globe to witness a spectacular display of colours, dances, sports, culture, peace, friendship, and fun in a safe environment."

João Paulo Rebelo, Portuguese Secretary of State for Youth and Sports, concluded: 

"These games have delegates from all continents. We will have with us, here in Lisbon, Portugal, demonstrations of happiness in sport from all over the world. [...] We are going to make these games, games of joy, fun, games that bring culture and people together. Sport and physical activity is essential for this and is recognised by the UN, by UNESCO and by the WHO for the contribution it makes to each one of us to our physical and mental health."

The programme continued with performances and demonstrations shared by delegations from all over the world as well as traditional performances from the host country. From Capoeira to Judo, Badminton, Teqball, Rope Skipping, Dance, Flemish traditional sports and games, Bocce and Tchoukball among many others, a wide display of diverse and unique sports and games was offered to the audience, setting the standard for the days to come. 


Concluding the day, the first session of the International Conference tackled the topic of "Keeping People Connected - Sports Innovation and Sport Diplomacy as Key Pillars" with interventions from Fiona Chambers (University College of Cork, Ireland), Keri McDonald (TAFISA, UK), and Stanley Mutoya (African Union Sports Council Region 5, Zimbabwe) moderated by Paulo Rocha (Portuguese Institute of Sport and Youth, Portugal). 

Session 1 of the International Conference
International Conference Session 1: "Keeping People Connected - Sports Innovation and Sport Diplomacy as Key Pillars"


The full Opening Ceremony and the rest of Day 1 can be watched again at https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/19


Day 2

Sunday 20 June marked the official launch of the TAFISA World Walking Day - 24 Hours Around the Globe campaign. The event, set to take place on 3 October 2021 at 10am local time everywhere in the world, will connect people from all time zones in the most accessible and inclusive 24-hour virtual relay across the planet from East to West. Learn more on the newly launched platform: https://www.worldwalkingday.org/

Portuguese culture was showcased with fado singing, a webinar on Portuguese Traditional Games hosted by FPJT and a special series entitled "A Taste of Portugal", allowing the audience to enjoy from afar what the coastal country has to offer. Traditional Sports and Games from various countries and organisations were also on the front stage, including Sankofa from Cape Verde, Functional Fitness, Iranian Traditional Sports and Games, Street Racket from Switzerland, Hangung from Korea, Obstacle Sports from the Philippines, and performances from Germany, Mozambique, USA, Poland, Spain, Hungary, Indonesia, and Russia among others.



The day's International Conference Session 2 invited Chiara Volonté (International Tchoukball Federation, Italy), Jean-François Laurent (TAFISA, France), Duane Wysynsky (World Dodgeball Federation, Canada) and moderator Jorge Carvalho (Portuguese Institute of Sport and Youth, Portugal) to discuss on "Diversifying the Sport Offer: New Sports and Disciplines Support Sport Participation". 

Day 2 can be watched again at https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/20


Day 3

A staple of TAFISA World Sport for All Games, School Day typically introduces traditional sports and games to pupils from the host city. This year's edition followed its predecessors and showed Portuguese schools inviting children to discover and play various games of yore. 


The day's programme included performances from delegations presenting Fistball, Kukkiwon Taekwondo, Kettlebell, Kronum, Novuss, Dances of the World, Hapkido and sports and games from Austria, Malawi, Saudi Arabia, Hungary, Malaysia, Serbia, Israel, Netherlands, Cuba, and Peru among others. 

For the 3rd Session of the International Conference, Yves Le Lostecque (EACEA Erasmus Mundus & Sport, France) and Max Tamazawa (Sasakawa Sports Foundation, Japan) with moderator Gaëtan Garcia (TAFISA, France) addressed the issue of "Healthy Lifestyles for All - Contribution from Sport for All". 

Day 3 can be watched again at https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/21

Day 4

The rich programme of 22 June kicked off with demonstrations taking place in Lisbon and offered a large variety of performances from Portuguese culture, traditional Portuguese Games, new sports and TSG from all over the world. Estonian Kiiking, Japanese Equestrian Archery "Yabusame" (流鏑馬), Spoqcs, Hapkido, Ju-Jitsu or Badminton made the show along with demonstrations from Georgia, Australia, Nepal, Italy, Macau, China, and Latvia among others. 


At the end of the day, the International Conference's 4th session moderated by Stacey Kim (TAFISA, Korea) brought together Maria Beatriz Rocha Ferreira (University of Campinas, Brazil), Finn Berggren (Gerlev Sports Academy, Denmark) and Henry Daut (National Academy of Sports, Philippines) around the theme "Traditional Sports and Games - A Source of Inspiration for the Future of Sports Participation?". 

Watch Day 4 at https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/22

Day 5

What an emotional day that Wednesday 23 June was! After introducing TSG and new sports (French Polynesian Va'a, Dodgeball, Mas-Wrestling, Kungfu, Dragon & Lion Dance, Kurash or Lithuanian Ristynės among many others), the broadcast looked back at 5 intense days of culture, sport, games and fun with a TAFISA Games 2021 best-of. 

This was followed by the last session of the International Conference "Sport and Physical Activity in Cultural Heritage Environments", moderated by Ingrid Martel (TAFISA, Germany) with contributions from Paula Nogueira (City of Guimarães, Portugal), Dato' Sarjit Singh (MARFIMA, Malaysia) and Cristina Vasilescu (Institute for Social Research, Italy). 

The day concluded with the Closing Ceremony of the Games, where the flag was officially passed to the host of the 8th TAFISA World Sport for All Games 2024 in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. Representing the Embassy of the Russian Federation in Portugal, Ekaterina Spitsyna received the flag from IPDJ President Vitor Pataco. 

Portugal passed the flag to Russia
Portugal gives the flag to Russia for the TAFISA Games 2024 in Nizhny Novgorod


Watch the Closing Ceremony and programme of Day 5 at: https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/23

Day 6

For the very last day, a TSG, new sports and performances best-of eased the audience into the end of the Games. Before concluding with a message from IPDJ President Vitor Pataco and the Portuguese Anthem, the hosts of future TAFISA flagship events allowed participants to take a glimpse at what's coming next, namely the 2nd TAFISA European Sport for All Games 2022 in Perugia, Italy; the 27th TAFISA World Congress 2022 in Portoroz, Slovenia and 8th TAFISA World Sport for All Games 2024 in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. 


You can see what the future will bring for TAFISA and the full Day 6 programme at https://www.tafisalisbon.com/en/24

TAFISA would like to once again thank all the delegations who shared videos of their performances and demonstrations, the Organising Committee, Portuguese Sports Confederation, Portuguese Institute of Sport and Youth, IOC, EU, ICSSPE, partners and all participants who joined the Games and made the event such a success. 

See you all in our next events!