Amsterdam is getting sportier

Amsterdammers are now on average fitter (or trying to be) than ever!

A study commissioned by the Municipality of Amsterdam has found that over the last ten years 11 per cent more people are regularly doing some form of sport.

The average number of committed sport participants is now 67 per cent, just above the Netherlands average of 66 per cent.

While increases were found in all age groups, young people are generally more active than their elders. This is despite children’s membership in sports associations in lower in Amsterdam than the rest of the country.

The municipality aims to do more work with schools to increase children’s involvement in sport, especially in the North, Southwest and New West areas of the city, where participation rates are the lowest. (This follows a related fitness program in the Hague in January.)

Most popular sports

Going to the gym is the most popular exercise in Amsterdam, with the numbers of people regularly attending a fitness centre rising nearly 20 per cent in 10 years.

The second most popular is running, with the numbers of runners doubling over the same period.

Swimming is also popular, with the number of Amsterdammers with at least an A diploma in swimming increased to three-quarters of the population. Of that 25 per cent with no qualifications, only 10 per cent reported that they can’t swim at all.

Finally, football is equally as popular as swimming, although (perhaps unsurprisingly) it is the most popular sport among young people.

The survey, the fifth by the municipality, asked a total of 4.266 people in Amsterdam, aged 6 years and over, about their exercise habits.

Alexandra Gowling


Alexandra Gowling

Alexandra is an Australian citizen and an experienced expat, having spent (quite a bit of) time in Asia before coming to the Netherlands a year ago. She enjoys writing, reading...

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