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Winter Universiade


The Winter Universiade is an international sporting and cultural festival which is staged every two years in a different city. It is only second to the Olympic Games. The programme of the Winter Universiade currently includes 6 compulsory sports (8 compulsory disciplines) and up to 3 optional sports chosen by the host country. It gathered a record of 2,668 participants in Trentino, Italy, in 2013 and a record number of 52 countries in Erzurum, Turkey, in 2011. 

Embracing FISU’s motto of 'Excellence in Mind and Body', the Winter Universiade incorporates educational and cultural aspects into 11 days of sports competitions, allowing university student-athletes worldwide to celebrate with the host city in a true spirit of friendship and sportsmanship.


Key Facts about the Winter Universiade (WU)

  • The biggest global winter multi-sports event for student-athletes
  • 11 days of sports competitions
  • More than 2,500 participants from more than 50 countries
  • 1,500 to 3,000 volunteers
  • 6 compulsory sports (8 compulsory disciplines) and up to 3 optional sports
  • Broadcasted by more than 100 TV channels aroud the World


Winter Universiade Organisation

Within the FISU chart, the Winter Universiade Department is in charge of all administrative and logistical issues. It also serves as the link between the different Organising Committees, delegations and international sports federations. 

In addition to this team, various FISU committees play very important roles in their respective areas in the management of the Winter Universiade, e.g. the Winter Universiade Supervision Committee (CSU), the International Technical Committee (CTI), the International Medical Committee (CMI), the International Control Committee (CIC), the Media and Communication Committee (MCC), etc.


Winter Universiade Sports programme*

The programme of the Winter Universiade currently includes 6 compulsory sports (8 compulsory disciplines) and up to 3 optional sports:




For more information, please contact the WU Department at winter.universiade@fisu.net


2017 Winter Universiade

28th Winter Universiade, Almaty, Kazakhstan


Watch the video from the HOD meeting

City of Youth and Sport

One of the oldest cities in the country, Almaty is a city of young people. A third of its population is 30 years old or younger. Almaty has more universities than any other cities in Kazakhstan. It is also a city of sport with modern competition and training facilities. Almaty hosts the highest number of various sporting events and campaigns to promote a healthy lifestyle – over 250 events annually. The landscape of Almaty allows each of its inhabitants to have an active and interesting lifestyle and go in for their favourite sports. The most popular sports in Almaty are skiing and snowboarding.


Cultural Heritage of Almaty

In Kazakh the word 'alma' means apple; and Almaty is literally translated as 'rich in apples'. The city was named in honour of apples, which have grown there since ancient times. This is why the emblem of Almaty, and of the whole Seven Rivers region, bears the image of this fruit. Almaty has an ancient and rich history. As a transit point on the Silk Road, the city was an international trade hub in Central Asia. Silk traders from China as well as ivory and spice sellers from India would meet there to leave a unique trace on the culture of the city. The city has been home to many prominent figures of science, arts, culture and education, who made important contributions to the cultural development of Kazakhstan. Today Almaty has a well-developed cultural infrastructure and skilled human resources, and it is home to the leading theatre, arts museum and library organisations of Kazakhstan.
Almaty regularly hosts international cultural events such as the international music festival 'Voice of Asia', the International Eurasia Film Festival and the International Jazz Festival.


The hosting of the 2017 Winter Universiade in Almaty will have a positive impact on the city and its inhabitants. It will foster a new wave of future leaders and inspire new achievements aiming at sustainable development through the prism of the Universiade and university sports.
Infrastructure: construction of new roads and improvement of the transportation system, construction of new sports facilities and of a university campus that will utilise advanced power-saving and environmentally-friendly technology
Education: training programme for sports reporters, sports doctors, sports event managers and sports tourism managers
Health care: a positive effect on the health of Almaty inhabitants, increasing their life expectancy and level of comfort
Tourism: an intensive development of tourist infrastructures (increase in the number of hotels and ski resorts) is planned during the preparation process of the Universiade.



29th Winter Universiade 2019

29th Winter Universiade in 2019, Krasnoyarsk, Russian Federation (RUS)


‘Real Winter’
Krasnoyarsk, a City with a ‘Real’ Winter!

Located in the North East of the Russian Federation, the city of Krasnoyarsk has a continental climate with hot summers and (very) cold winters. This is great since the Krasnoyarsk Organising Committee promises to offer us the experience of a ‘Real Winter’ in 2019, according to its slogan. In this region the white gold is abundant and provides perfect practice for all winter sports.

A young city - up to 41 % of its population is younger than thirty - Krasnoyarsk has over 40 youth organisations that are very active and interconnected. It is also a university city with 9 institutes of higher education, the oldest being the State University of Siberia for Technology which was founded in 1930. It counts more than 100,000 students and interns from 39 countries. Krasnoyarsk is a sports town as well since 20% of its population is involved in sports in one way or another. Due to its four sports academies, it is also a cradle of great champions who compete in major national and international events.

Krasnoyarsk is not inexperienced in staging winter sports competitions. Although it has not yet organised any international major multi-sport events, it is a regular host for national competitions in alpine skiing, biathlon, snowboarding and freestyle skiing.

Krasnoyarsk and its region offer in any case a well-stocked infrastructure dedicated to winter sports. Some venues will be renovated and others replaced for the occasion. In addition, all new sports complexes will be built for the Universiade and among them, several ice rinks and a major center for snow sports.

Finally, athletes will be housed in a new Athletes’ Village, which is seldom the case for the Winter Universiade.

The Organising Committee shall have all the support of the Russian Student Sports Union (RSSU).


30th Winter Universiade 2021

30th Winter Universiade in 2021, Lucerne, Switzerland (SUI)




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