In the United States, NAA serves exclusively as the national authority in overseeing and certifying aviation records. Since 1905, NAA has been a member of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale (FAI). The FAI is the international organization responsible for the coordination of air sports, competition, and certification of all aviation and space records in the world. NAA, as the U.S. representative of the FAI, is responsible for coordination and certification of all aviation and space records originating in the United States.

NAA encourages pilots of all levels of experience to set records. Absolute World Records are the supreme achievements of all the hundreds of records open to flying machines. Speed records can be established between any two recognized cities within the United States, or to a major city abroad. These records are classified by weight category, which permits the owner of a small single-engine trainer to also set records. The more people involved in setting records and receiving recognition, the more interest is generated for aviation. Getting young people interested in aviation as a career is important and record setting is a good way get them involved.