International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation

The International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation, commonly known by its French name Union Internationale des Associations d'Alpinisme (UIAA, lit. International Union of Alpine Clubs) was founded in August 1932 in Chamonix, France when 20 mountaineering associations met for an alpine congress. Count Charles Egmond d’Arcis, from Switzerland, was chosen as the first president and it was decided by the founding members that the UIAA would be an international federation which would be in charge of the "study and solution of all problems regarding mountaineering".[1] The UIAA Safety Label was created in 1960 and was internationally approved in 1965 and currently (2015) has a global presence on five continents with 86 member associations in 62 countries representing over 3 million people.[2]

International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation
FoundedAugust 1932; 88 years ago (1932-08)
HeadquartersBern, Switzerland
PresidentPeter Muir
Official website


The UIAA is today the international governing body of climbing and mountaineering and represents climbers and mountaineers around the world on a wide range of issues related to mountain safety, sustainability and competition sport.

The International Climbers’ Meet, the goal of these meets is to foster good will and cultural understanding through our shared passion of climbing by hosting a diverse group of climbing abilities from a multitude of countries.


The UIAA Safety Commission develops and maintains safety standards for climbing equipment. These standards are implemented worldwide by the manufacturers who also participate in annual Safety Commission meetings. The Commission works with nearly 60 manufacturers worldwide and has 1,861 products certified.

Dynamic Rope UIAA fall count rating The test to determine the fall count uses a 5.1m rope and drops a weight (80 kg single rope / 55 kg double rope) so that it falls 4.8m before experiencing a reaction force from the rope. This means that the weight is falling below the fixed end and there is minimal rope to stretch and absorb the force. The fall count rating is the number of times the rope can undergo this test before breaking. For the dynamic rope to be UIAA certified it requires a fall count rating of 5 or more.[3]

This number does not indicate that the rope needs to be discarded after this many falls while climbing, since a fall would usually not have the climber fall beyond the belayer and there is usually more rope to stretch and absorb the fall. There has been no recorded accidents of a UIAA certified dynamic rope breaking without there being damage from a sharp edge or chemical.

Mountain Medicine Diploma Together with the International Society of Mountain Medicine (ISMM) and the International Commission for Alpine Rescue (ICAR), the UIAA Medical Commission has established and developed a joint Diploma in Mountain Medicine that establishes minimal requirements for courses in mountain medicine in August 1997 (Interlaken, Switzerland). Many course organizers adopted these standards and the Diploma in Mountain Medicine (DiMM) has become a widely respected qualification.

The Medical Commission was founded in 1981. Its history dates back to an earlier time when there were only a few doctors representing the largest mountaineering federations. The commission has grown to include 22 delegated doctors from 18 different mountaineering federations, as well as 16 corresponding members from all over the world. The UIAA Medical Commission has worked very closely with the Medical Commission of the International Commission for Alpine Rescue (ICAR). The current presidents of the UIAA Medical commission and the MedCom ICAR are always on the advisory board of the ISMM.


The UIAA is the world governing body for ice climbing competitions. The annual World Cup circuit and the bi annual World Championship and Youth World Championship are organised on different continents with athletes from over 30 countries participating.

Ice climbing The UIAA is the world governing body for ice climbing competitions. The annual UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup circuit and the bi annual World Championship and Youth World Championship are organized in different continents with athletes from over 30 countries participating.

There are two ice climbing disciplines, Speed and Lead. In Speed, athletes race up an ice face for the best time. In Lead competitions the climbers' ability to master a difficult route in a given time is tested.

Anti-Doping Commission The UIAA has adopted the World Anti-Doping Code (2014); this includes the mandatory articles of the Code and all relevant International Standards. The commission also oversees the anti-doping testing of athletes who participate in UIAA ice climbing competitions.

Global Youth Summit The Global Youth Summit is a series of UIAA youth events where young mountaineers from around the world come together to climb, promote peace and cooperation between countries and work on the protection of the environment. First implemented ten years ago, it consists of a series of expeditions and camps offered by UIAA member federations to other UIAA member federations and their members.

All UIAA Global Youth Summit events are organised and undertaken in strict accordance with the relevant Federation's regulations and UIAA Youth Commission Handbook & UIAA Youth Commission criteria and recommendations governing such events. Once approved the National Federation or event organiser and their designated leaders have responsibility for the event. The UIAA Youth Commission and UIAA Office may on occasion appoint other responsible persons such as trainers, event organisers and partners.

Safety Label holders


  • Alpidex
  • Alien Cams
  • Austrialpin
  • Arcteryx
  • Beal
  • Beste
  • Big Wall
  • Black Diamond
  • Black Safe
  • Blue Water Ropes
  • Camp
  • Cassin
  • Cilao
  • Cousin-Trestec
  • Conquista
  • Climbing Technology
  • DMM
  • Edelweiss
  • Edelrid
  • EKS
  • Faders
  • FIXE
  • Fusion
  • Gaetani
  • Gilmonte
  • Gipfel
  • Gleisein
  • GM Climbing
  • GrandWall
  • Grivel
  • Haftgohar
  • Ice Rock
  • Kailas
  • Kong
  • Lyon
  • Mad Rock
  • Mammut
  • Metolius
  • Millet
  • Misty Mountain
  • Nal Hon
  • New England Ropes
  • Ocun
  • Omega Pacific
  • Peguet
  • Petzl
  • PMI
  • Ravina
  • Raumer
  • Roca
  • Rock Exotica
  • Ropenet
  • SMC
  • Salewa
  • Schweiger Fulpmes
  • Simond
  • Singing Rock
  • Skylotec
  • Southern Ropes
  • Sterling
  • Stubai
  • Tapecraft
  • Tendon
  • Usang
  • Vento
  • Waves




CountryAssociationMember since
 AndorraFederacio Andorrana de Muntanyisme (FAM)1982
 ArgentinaFederación Argentina de Ski y Andinismo (FASA)1951
 AzerbaijanMountaineering Federation of Azerbaijan Republic (AAF)2011
 AzerbaijanAzerbaijan Air and Extreme Sports Federation (FAIREX)2011
 BelgiumClimbing & Mountaineering Belgium (CMBEL)1932
 Bosnia and HerzegovinaMountaineering Union of Bosnia - Herzegovina (PSBH)1997
 BrazilConfederação Brasileira de Montanhismo e Escalada (CBME)2005
 BulgariaBulgarian Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (BCMF)1935
 CanadaAlpine Club of Canada (ACC)1947
 CanadaEcole Nationale d'Escalade du Québec (ENEQ)2002
 CanadaFédération Québécoise de la Montagne et de l'Escalade (FQME)1975
 ChileFederación de Andinismo de Chile (FEACH)1955
 ChinaChinese Mountaineering Association (CMA)1985
 ChinaChina Hong Kong Mountaineering and Climbing Union (CHKMCU)1988
 CyprusMountaineering and Climbing Federation of Cyprus (KOMOA)2007
 South KoreaCorean Alpine Club (CAC)1969
 South KoreaKorean Alpine Federation (KAF)1969
 CroatiaHrvatski planinarski savez (HPS)1991
 DenmarkDansk Bjergklub (DB)1977
 DenmarkDansk Klatreforbund (DCF)1998
 FinlandFinnish Climbing Association (FCA)1994
 FranceFédération Française des clubs alpins et de montagne (FFCAM)1932
 GeorgiaMountaineering and Climbing Association of Georgia (MCAG)1993
 JapanJapan Mountaineering Association (JMA)1967
 GreeceHellenic Federation of Mountaineering and Climbing (EOOA)1936
 IndiaIndian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF)1981
 IndiaHimalayan Mountaineering Institute (HMI)2011
 IndiaNehru Institute for Mountaineering (NIM)2011
 IranI.R. Iran Mountaineering and Sport Climbing Federation (I.R.IMSCF)1972
 IrelandMountaineering Ireland (MCI)2004
 IsraelThe Israeli Alpine Club (ILAC)2009
 ItalyAlpenverein Südtirol (AVS)1974
 ItalyClub Alpino Italiano (CAI)1932
 ItalyInternational Skyrunning Federation (ISF)2011
 KosovoKosovo Mountaineering and Alpinist Federation (KMAF)2011
 LatviaLatvijas Alpinistu Savieniba (LAA)1992
 LiechtensteinLiechtensteiner Alpenverein (LAV)1959
 LithuaniaLithuanian Mountaineering Association (LMA)1991
 LuxembourgFédération Luxembourgeoise d'Escalade, de Rendonnée Sportive et d'Alpinisme (FLERA)1960
 North MacedoniaFYR Macedonian Mountain Sport Federation (MMSF)1999
 MexicoFederación Mexicana de Deportes de Montaña y Escalada AC (FMDME)1947
 MonacoClub Alpin Monégasque (CAM)1994
 MongoliaNational Mountaineering Federation of Mongolia (NMF)2010
   NepalNepal Mountaineering Association (NMA)1975
 NorwayNorges Klatreforbund (NK)1993
 NorwayNorsk Tindeklub (NTK)1965
 New ZealandNew Zealand Alpine Club (NZAC)1932
 NetherlandsRoyal Dutch Mountaineering and Climbing Club (NKBV)1932
 PakistanAlpine Club of Pakistan (ACP)1979
 PolandPolish Mountaineering Association (PZA)1932
 PortugalClube Nacional de Montanhismo (CNM)1955
 PortugalFederação de Campismo e Montanhismo de Portugal (FCMP)1992
 PortugalFederação Portuguesa de Montanhismo e Escalada (FPME)2004
 Czech RepublicCesky Horolezecky Svaz (CMA)1932
 Dominican RepublicAssociación Dominicana De Escalada y Montañismo (ADEM)2010
 United KingdomBritish Mountaineering Council (BMC)1932 (1944-[10])
 United KingdomThe Alpine Club (TAC)2003 (1932-1944[11] and 2003-)
 RomaniaClubul Alpin Român (CAR)1934
 RussiaClimbing Federation of Russia (CFR)2004
 RussiaRussian Mountaineering Federation (RMF)2007
 SerbiaMountaineering Association of Serbia (PSS)2002
 SlovakiaSlovensky Horolezecky Spolok JAMES (SMU JAMES)1932
 SloveniaAlpine Association of Slovenia (PZS)1991
 United StatesAlaskan Alpine Club (ALAC)1985
 United StatesAmerican Alpine Club (AAC)1932
 South AfricaThe Mountain Club of South Africa (MCSA)1992
 SpainCentre Excursionista de Catalunya (CEC)1932
 SpainEuskal Mendizale Federazioa (EMF)2002
 SpainFederació d'Entitats Excursionistes de Catalunya (FEEC)2000
 SpainFederación Española de Deportes de Montaña y Escalada (FEDME)1932
 SwedenSvenska Klätterförbundet (SKF)1973
  SwitzerlandSchweizer Alpen-Club (SAC)1932
  SwitzerlandVereinigung Akademischer Alpenclubs der Schweiz (VAACS)1985
 Chinese TaipeiChinese Taipei Alpine Association (CTAA)1989
 Chinese TaipeiChinese Taipei Mountaineering Association (CTMA)1993
 TurkeyTurkiye Dagcilik Federasyonu (TDF)1967
 UkraineUkrainian Mountaineering Federation (UMF)1991
 HungaryMagyar Hegy- és Sportmászó Szövetség (MHSSZ)1932
 HungaryMagyar Sportturisztikai Szövetség (MSTSZ)2003


  1. "UIAA Foundation & Early years". Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  2. Apollo, Michal (2017). "The true accessibility of mountaineering: The case of the High Himalaya". Journal of Outdoor Recreation and Tourism. 17: 29–43. doi:10.1016/j.jort.2016.12.001.
  3. "Safety Standards – UIAA". Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  4. "UIAA Safety Label". theUIAA. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  5. Obituary: Albert Eggler – Arts and Entertainment. The Independent (10 September 1998).
  7. Archived 8 April 2013 at the Wayback Machine
  8. grough — Frits Vrijlandt elected UIAA president after no-confidence vote in former head. (19 October 2012).
  9. "About – UIAA – Role of Honour". Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  10. "About the BMC". Retrieved 3 January 2020.
  11. Scaglia, Ilaria (5 December 2019). Envisioning a League of Nations in the Alps. ISBN 9780198848325. Retrieved 3 January 2020.