Federation Internationale des Quilleurs was
formed in 1951 to foster worldwide interest in
amateur tenpin and ninepin bowling and
international friendship through world and zone
tournaments. The FIQ succeeded the
International Bowling Congress which had been
formed in 1947. FIQ's official languages are
Spanish, German, French and English.
The first FIQ World Championships attracted
seven nations to Helsinki, Finland in 1954
where Sweden dominated the competition. That
was not surprising because the Swedes were
given glowing reports of the American tenpin
sport as early as 1909 when Bruno Soderstrom
returned from the United States and interested
friends in building the first tenpin bowling
center in his country.
The second FIQ world was conducted in 1955 in
Essen, Germany, attracting 12 nations. The 1958
event in Sweden was the first to include
Asia's bowling interest was piqued and a
contingent from the Far East traveled to Malmo,
Sweden in 1961. International bowling also
spread to the Americas in the 1960s. The United
States joined FIQ in 1961 and the U.S. and
other American Zone members competed in the
1963 FIQ World in Mexico City where 19 teams
entered. The U.S. dominated the mend's and
women's competition (it was the first
tournament where women competed).
By the time the U.S. hosted the FIQ World in
Milwaukee in 1971, 32 nations sent 371 bowlers.
Only nine nations were present at its
organizational meeting in Hamburg, Germany, but
FIQ today boasts 93 federation members with 100
million people involved in the sport.
Comprising 27 North, Central and South American
nations, the FIQ American Zone is one of three
world-wide FIQ zones. The Asian and European
Zones consist of 26 and 40 nations,
[Image] The FIQ first applied for International Olympic
Committee recognition in 1963 and was
recognized in 1979. Its first request for
Olympic medal status came on December 17, 1984.
Bowling was an exhibition sport in the 1988
Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, Korea.
FIQ, under the leadership of Gerald Koenig of
the United States, has blossomed to today's
highest membership level in history. FIQ is
headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo.
History / Equipment / Glossary / Rules