Groningen is one of the best places when it comes to combining studying with sport. Developing your talent in sport is possible at every level, whether you’re still a beginner or have the ambition to follow the footsteps of Johan Cruijff. Athletes can for example combine their studying with their busy sport schedule by following the sport degree track. The sport degree track is especially developed for top athletes to fit their timetable around their intensive training sessions and competitions.
However, you don’t have to be an athlete to practice sports next to your studies. Groningen offers many possibilities for students to practice sports and discover new talents. For only fifty euros per year, every student can join the ACLO; the students sports organisation of Groningen. Membership of ACLO gives you the possibility to practice sports seven days a week unlimited. This means you can discover and practice as many new sports as you want, and become a pro in something your friends never expected! Next to the standard fitness classes, you can also choose to follow other fun and challenging sports such as wakeboarding, tennis and yoga. You can also decide to try a more unusual sport such as underwater hockey. Groningen is the only place in the North of the Netherlands where you can practice underwater hockey, which means you definitely have something to brag about to your friends. Other than that you can practice as many sports as you like, and find out yourself in which you excel the most!
Student Sport Associations
In case you are already a bit more experienced in a particular sport, you can join one of the seventy student sport associations in Groningen. The student sport associations have relatively low fees compared to normal sport clubs. Often, the training sessions in for example tennis, football and hockey are held by students who train and coach other students. So when you have the expertise and skills, you can also choose to teach other students in the sport you are experienced in. That way you can have a bit of both; enjoying the sport you are passionate about, and at the same time trying to bring your passion for sport over to other students!
In addition, many student sport associations perform at a national or even global level. That means that when you’re passionate, you can even try to reach the top! To name a few, Volleyball Association Donitas is currently playing in the B-League, which is the second highest level in the Netherlands. Only the A-League is one step higher, which consists of the Dutch national volleyball team. Also the rowing team of Groningen reaches the top when it comes to competitions. When you join the student rowing team in Groningen, it is possible to, after several years of hard training, be among the top in the Netherlands.
The best rowers of the student associations Gyas and Aegir are participating in national and international competitions, and are also frequently part of the Olympic rowing team!
So whether you’re a beginner or an advanced athlete, Groningen offers sport facilities for every student at each level. What better way to clear your mind from studying than taking the time to discover and practice new sports? If you become the new pro underwater hockey player, you know for sure you’re friends have a great story to tell back home! With more than seventy different sports, there must always be something of your interest.