A Beginner’s Guide to Sports Tourism Jargon

By Jon Schmieder, April 10, 2017

If you’ve ever asked yourself, “What in the world is an NGB?” you are not alone. Sports tourism jargon can be overwhelming to newcomers. Whether you’re an industry vet in need of a resource to prep volunteers, or a recent college grad kicking off your career as a rights holder, use this glossary of acronyms and terms to brush up on the world of sports tourism.

AAU: Amateur Athletic Union

For more than 120 years, AAU has been one of the largest sports organizations in the country. AAU is also an event rights holder that conducts national championships in 33 different sports.

CVB: Convention and Visitors Bureau

Many cities house their sports tourism and event efforts within a CVB.

Event Rights Holder

Not to be confused with an NGB (definition below), a rights holder is a non-Olympic-sanctioned entity that owns and operates events. Like NGB events, rights holder events are often bid on by cities and drive significant economic impact and overnight hotel stays to the host community.

HOF: Hall of Fame

There are hundreds of halls of fame for nearly every sport, state or sports-related industry.

IOC: International Olympic Committee

This is the body that administers the Olympics every two years, alternating between the Summer and Winter Games.

LOC: Local Organizing Committee

An LOC is a group of local citizens put in place to help coordinate a championship event in that community.

NAIA: National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics

The NAIA covers small, four-year liberal arts colleges and universities. Its membership includes more than 250 schools from across the country in 21 conferences.

NASC: National Association of Sports Commissions

The NASC is an association of more than 900 members including CVBs, sports commissions, NGBs, event rights holders, and companies supporting the sports tourism and events industry.

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