The International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) World Championships Bern 2023 opened in the very heart of the Swiss capital, as athletes from around the world were introduced to the onlooking crowds.

With over 630 climbers and paraclimbers set to compete in the 12-day premier event, wet conditions turned sunny as national teams made their way through the streets of Bern, starting at Münsterplatz and finishing in front of the Federal Parliament.

In procession behind a Swiss marching band, 54 nations were finally presented to an eager crowd at the Bundesplatz – a UNESCO Cultural World Heritage Site – with the host nation the last to be welcomed on stage.

Many of the athletes were fresh from action as the men’s Boulder qualification got underway earlier in the day.

IFSC President Marco Scolaris addressed the audience saying: “Today we can say that the IFSC has found its identity. One hundred countries are represented within the organisation, the vertical dimension fascinates millions around the world, whether they watch competitions, or join a climbing gym, or go outside.

“It is becoming an urban sport, while not leaving behind its natural roots and its values. Mutual respect, inclusion, sustainability, just to mention some: these are not just words in Climbing, they belong to Climbing, to the climbers, they are our DNA.  

“We are still listening to our soul and passion is still our driving force, inspiring each other with the simplicity of our spirit: let’s go higher!”

Scolaris then added: “We are proud to celebrate Swiss National Day with you, with the opening of the 18th IFSC World Championships and the beginning of this amazing journey that will qualify the first athletes to the Olympic Games Paris 2024.”

The World Championships will continue tomorrow with the women’s Lead qualification round, taking place at 11:00 (UTC+2:00).

News and updates about the IFSC World Championships Bern 2023 will be available on the official website of the event, on the IFSC event page, and on the Federation’s digital channels: FacebookInstagramTwitterLinkedIn, and exclusively for the Chinese audience, Douyin and Weibo.

230801 IFSC News Athletes parade highlights opening ceremony in the streets of BernTeam Switzerland parades in the streets of Bern
Photo: Lena Drapella/IFSC

IFSC World Championships Bern 2023

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