World Aquatics Championships
StatusActive
GenreGlobal Sporting Event
Date(s)Two Weeks (usually mid-year)
FrequencyUsually Biennial
Location(s)Various Host Cities
Years active50 years
Inaugurated1973 (1973)
Most recentDoha 2024
Previous eventFukuoka 2023
Next eventSingapore 2025
ActivitySwimming, Diving, Water Polo, Artistic Swimming, Open Water Swimming, High Diving
Organised byWorld Aquatics
Editions21 (including 2024)
Websiteworldaquatics.com
2024 World Aquatics Championships

The World Aquatics Championships (known as the FINA World Championships until 2022) are the World Championships for six aquatic disciplines: swimming, diving, high diving, open water swimming, artistic swimming, and water polo. The championships are staged by World Aquatics, formerly known as FINA (Fédération internationale de natation), the international federation recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for administering international competitions in water sports. The championships are World Aquatics' largest and main event traditionally held biennially every odd year, with all six of the aquatic disciplines contested every championships.

The championships were first staged in 1973 in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, with competitions held in swimming, diving, synchronised swimming and water polo.[1] In 1991 open water swimming was added to the championships as a fifth discipline.[2] In 2013 high diving was added to the championships as a sixth discipline.[3] In 2017 the synchronised swimming discipline was renamed to artistic swimming.[4]

Prior to the 9th World Aquatics Championships in Fukuoka in 2001, the championships had been staged at various intervals of two to four years. From 2001 to 2019 the championships were held biennially in odd years. Due to interruptions from the COVID-19 pandemic, travel restrictions, host venues withdrawing from hosting championships and World Aquatics' withdrawing the rights to host championships, the championships will be staged in every year from 2022 to 2025 until resuming to biennial from 2025 onwards.

The World Open Water Swimming Championships (also known as 'Open Water Worlds') is part of the World Aquatics Championships. Additional standalone editions of the Open Water Championships were also held in the even years from 2000 to 2010. The World Masters Championships (also known as 'Masters Worlds) is open to athletes 25 years and above (30+ years in water polo) in each aquatics discipline excluding high diving and has been held as part of the World Aquatics Championships since 2015. Prior to this, the Masters Championship was held separately, biennially in even years.

Athletes from all current 208 World Aquatics member federations are eligible to compete at the championships, along with athletes considered 'Neutral Independent Athletes' under the rules of World Aquatics and athletes from the 'World Aquatics Refugee Team'. The 2019 championships set the record for the most athletes participating (2,623).[5] At the recent 2024 championships participated athletes from record 199 nations: 197 member federations, 1 suspended member federation and Athlete Refugee Team.

Championships

Member federations referred to as winners, second, and third, in the table below, are the top three nation's listed on the medal tally based on the standard method of ranking (being total gold medals, followed by total silver medals, and then total bronze medals).

Year Dates Edition Location Nations Athletes Events Events Details Winner Second Third Most Medals
1973 31 August – 9 September 1 Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Belgrade, Yugoslavia 47 686 37 18 (M), 19 (W)  United States  East Germany  Italy  United States
1975 19–27 July 2 Colombia Cali, Colombia 39 682 37 18 (M), 19 (W)  United States  East Germany  Hungary  United States
1978 20–28 August 3 West Germany West Berlin, West Germany 49 828 37 18 (M), 19 (W)  United States*  Soviet Union  Canada  United States
1982 29 July – 8 August 4 Ecuador Guayaquil, Ecuador 52 848 37 18 (M), 19 (W)  United States  East Germany  Soviet Union  United States
1986 13–23 August 5 Spain Madrid, Spain 34 1,119 41 19 (M), 22 (W)  East Germany  United States  Canada  United States
1991 3–13 January 6 Australia Perth, Australia 60 1,142 45 21 (M), 24 (W)  United States  China  Hungary  United States
1994 1–11 September 7 Italy Rome, Italy 102 1,400 45 21 (M), 24 (W)  China  United States  Russia  China
1998 8–17 January 8 Australia Perth, Australia 121 1,371 53 24 (M), 27 (W), 2 (X)  United States  Russia  Australia  United States
2001 16–29 July 9 Japan Fukuoka, Japan 134 1,498 61 29 (M), 32 (W)  Australia  China  United States  United States
2003 12–27 July 10 Spain Barcelona, Spain 157 2,015 62 29 (M), 33 (W)  United States  Russia  Australia  United States
2005 16–31 July 11 Canada Montreal, Canada 144 1,784 62 29 (M), 33 (W)  United States  Australia  China  United States
2007 18 March – 1 April 12 Australia Melbourne, Australia 167 2,158 65 29 (M), 36 (W)  United States  Russia  Australia  United States
2009 17 July – 2 August 13 Italy Rome, Italy 185 2,556 65 29 (M), 36 (W)  United States  China  Russia  United States
and  China
2011 16–31 July 14 China Shanghai, China 181 2,220 66 29 (M), 36 (W), 1 (X)  United States  China  Russia  China
2013 19 July – 4 August 15 Spain Barcelona, Spain 181 2,293 68 30 (M), 37 (W), 1 (X)  United States  China  Russia  United States
2015 24 July – 9 August 16 Russia Kazan, Russia 190 2,400 75 30 (M), 37 (W), 8 (X)  China  United States  Russia  China
2017 14–30 July 17 Hungary Budapest, Hungary 182 2,360 75 30 (M), 37 (W), 8 (X)  United States  China  Russia  United States
2019 12–28 July 18 South Korea Gwangju, South Korea 192 2,623 76 30 (M), 38 (W), 8 (X)  China  United States  Russia  United States
2022 18 June – 3 July 19 Hungary Budapest, Hungary 183 2,034 74 29 (M), 37 (W), 8 (X)  United States  China  Italy  United States**
2023 14–30 July 20 Japan Fukuoka, Japan 195 2,392 75 31 (M), 33 (W), 11 (X)  China  Australia  United States  United States
2024 2–18 February 21 Qatar Doha, Qatar 199 2,238 75 31 (M), 33 (W), 11 (X)  China*  United States  Australia  China
2025 22 Singapore Singapore[6]
2027 23 Hungary Budapest, Hungary[6]
2029 24 China Beijing, China[7]

* Record by number of gold medals –  United States (23 gold medals, 1978) and  China (23 gold medals, 2024)
** Record by number of total medals –  United States (49 medals in total, 2022)

All-time medal table

Updated after the 2024 World Aquatics Championships.

RankNationGoldSilverBronzeTotal
1 United States302246190738
2 China20712496427
3 Australia11712790334
4 Russia1057362240
5Italy Italy516275188
6 East Germany514427122
7Hungary Hungary433433110
8 Germany426473179
9 Great Britain363765138
10 France333734104
11 Canada305671157
12 Netherlands244234100
13Sweden Sweden21211860
14 Japan194979147
15Brazil Brazil17151951
16 Soviet Union16282872
17 Spain14423591
18 Ukraine13193062
19 South Africa1371737
20 West Germany871227
21 Poland6111229
22 Greece57921
23Lithuania Lithuania53311
24 Romania52815
25Denmark Denmark49821
26 Zimbabwe4509
27 Tunisia43411
28 South Korea42511
29 Serbia4217
30 Croatia33410
31 Finland3227
32 Mexico2141935
33 New Zealand26816
34 Belarus2136
 Yugoslavia2136
36 Portugal2114
37 Ireland2002
38 Austria16613
39  Switzerland1629
40 North Korea1326
41 Hong Kong1214
 Norway1214
43 Malaysia1168
44 Bulgaria1146
45 Belgium1124
 Colombia1124
 Costa Rica1124
 Serbia and Montenegro1124
49 Kazakhstan1012
50 Suriname1001
51 Slovakia0325
52 Czech Republic0303
53 Cuba0112
 Czechoslovakia0112
 Iceland0112
 Jamaica0112
57 Ecuador0101
 Israel0101
Montenegro Montenegro0101
60 Egypt0055
61 Argentina0022
   Neutral Independent Athletes [a]0022
 Singapore0022
64 Bosnia and Herzegovina0011
 Puerto Rico0011
 Trinidad and Tobago0011
 Venezuela0011
Totals (67 entries)1234124412303708

Multiple gold medalists

Boldface denotes active athletes and highest medal count per type.

Rank Athlete Country Gender Discipline From To Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 Michael Phelps  United States M Swimming 2001 2011 26 6 1 33
2 Katie Ledecky  United States F Swimming 2013 2023 21 5 26
3 Svetlana Romashina  Russia F Artistic swimming 2005 2019 21 21
4 Natalia Ishchenko  Russia F Artistic swimming 2005 2015 19 2 21
5 Ryan Lochte  United States M Swimming 2005 2015 18 5 4 27
6 Svetlana Kolesnichenko  Russia F Artistic swimming 2011 2019 16 16
7 Caeleb Dressel  United States M Swimming 2017 2022 15 2 17
8 Sarah Sjöström  Sweden F Swimming 2009 2024 14 8 3 25
9 Alla Shishkina  Russia F Artistic swimming 2009 2019 14 14
10 Anastasia Davydova  Russia F Artistic swimming 2001 2011 13 1 14

Disciplines, events & medalists

Except where specified below, there are male and female categories for each event.

Swimming (since 1973)

Main article: Swimming at the World Aquatics Championships

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in swimming (men)

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in swimming (women)

Distance Free Back Breast Fly I.M. Free relay Medley relay Mixed free relay Mixed medley relay
50m
100m
200m
400m
800m
1500m

Diving (since 1973)

Main article: World Diving Championships

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in diving

Men's and women's events:

Mixed events:

Artistic swimming (since 1973)

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in synchronised swimming

Except for Acrobatic routine, all events include technical and free routines, with medals awarded separately.

Water polo (since 1973)

Main article: Water polo at the World Aquatics Championships

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in water polo

Open water swimming (since 1991)

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in open water swimming

High diving (since 2013)

Main article: List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in high diving

See also

Notes

  1. ^ At the 2024 World Championships, in accordance with sanctions imposed following by the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, athletes from Belarus were not permitted to use the name, flag, or anthem of Belarus. They instead participated as "Neutral Independent Athletes (NIA)" and under the World Aquatics flag.

References

  1. ^ "Overview". World Aquatics. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  2. ^ "Overview". World Aquatics. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  3. ^ "Overview". World Aquatics. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  4. ^ "Overview". World Aquatics. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  5. ^ "18th FINA World Championships: Entry List by Event" (PDF). Omega Timing. Archived (PDF) from the original on 18 July 2019. Retrieved 17 November 2019.
  6. ^ a b "World Aquatics Championships 2025 awarded to Singapore". World Aquatics. 9 February 2023. Retrieved 9 February 2023.
  7. ^ "Beijing announced as World Aquatics Championships 2029 host". World Aquatics. 11 February 2024. Retrieved 11 February 2024.

Media related to World Aquatics Championships at Wikimedia Commons