The Global Pickleball Federation (GPF) website has announced it is the international governing body for the sport of pickleball.
The press release goes on to say the GPF represents approximately 95 percent of pickleball members worldwide and will collaborate with continental federations, member countries, and other partners to advance pickleball on a global scale.
Global Promotion And Expansion
The GPF‘s mission is to promote and expand pickleball internationally, from amateur to professional levels, with integrity and purpose.
Key priorities include obtaining recognition from the International Olympic Committee as the sport’s International Federation and securing a place for pickleball in the Olympic and Paralympic program.
Additionally, the GPF will offer member countries and players access to equipment, official rules, educational resources, support ambassador networks, international tournaments, and equipment standards.
A Credible International Governing Body
Javier Regalado, President of the Pickleball Federation of the Americas (PFA) and GPF Board Member emphasized the urgent need for a credible international governing body:
“An urgent need exists for an effective and respected international governing body that is led by member countries in alignment with their continental federations.
“Our PFA member countries throughout the Western Hemisphere are committed to unify under this one dynamic organization and work toward International Olympic Committee compliance on a global scale.”
The GPF has managed to achieve exclusive alignment with four out of five continental federations, including the Asian Pickleball Association, Confederation of African Pickleball, Oceania Pickleball Federation, and the Pickleball Federation of the Americas (no mention was made of the European Pickleball Federation).
These federations also hold immediate board representation within the new organization.
National governing bodies across the four continents, including countries like the United States, Canada, Australia, Mexico, and various African nations, will be affiliated with the GPF.
The GPF’s headquarters will be based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, alongside the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee and numerous other National Governing Bodies.
Spreading Pickleball At Grass-Roots Level
Dr. Kwabena Dautey Akufo, President of the Confederation of African Pickleball (CAP), gave his take on the launch: “It has always been the goal of CAP to provide the resources necessary for each of its member countries to spread pickleball on the African continent at the grassroots level.
“This alignment with GPF allows CAP to accomplish this goal and make pickleball a people’s sport. It will also bring credible international resources to support the first-ever pickleball tournament during the upcoming African Games.”
Strategic Partnership With Pickleball United
A further section reported that The GPF has established a strategic partnership with Pickleball United, the inaugural official sponsor of the global federation.
GPF member countries will gain access to the GPF Equipment Grant Program, supporting their endeavors to initiate pickleball programs and clubs and introducing new players to the sport.
The GPF and Pickleball United extend an invitation to other equipment manufacturers who share this vision to join in spreading the sport of pickleball worldwide.
Starting January 1, 2024, 500 pickleball starter sets will be available to GPF-member countries, with an additional 1,000 sets offered at a subsidized rate of $100.
Becoming A Member
To become a member of the GPF, the initial step is to apply through the respective Continental Federation and fulfill their membership criteria. Subsequently, member applications will undergo evaluation by both the Continental Federation and the Global Pickleball Federation.
An online application for GPF membership can be accessed at globalpickleballfederation.org.
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