Exercising as a foreign student in Groningen

30th August 2018, Emmen, F. Westerveld

A healthy lifestyle among young people is becoming more popular by the year. In Holland, an average of 67% of people between the age of eighteen and thirty exercise at least once on a weekly bases. Attending the gym, or any other sports activities, is not only good for your health, but the social aspect of participating in sports is also a benefit. One can imagine that taking part in such activities is a good way for foreign students to learn to know new people. 



The ACLO, or the (freely translated to) Academic Central for Physical Education, facilitates various physical activities for students. For an amount of sixty euros per year, one can participate in these activities. With an amount of more than nineteen thousand students, the ACLO is the largest overarching student sport organization of the Netherlands. The ACLO gives you, as a student, access to forty nine sporting facilities.

Wide variety

The ACLO offers sport in various ways. First of all, there are many kinds of group lessons. What all of these group lessons have in common, is that they are given by a sports teacher and during these hours, you can practice the concerning sport on your own level. Secondly, Open hours are lessons which you can always join (of course, when in possession of ACLO membership). Secondly, there are the so called open hours. The difference with group lessons is that during the open hours, the sports teacher is only there as supervision, like during a game of futsal. The ACLO also offers introductory courses for various sports. In these courses, students can make a first acquaintance with the particular sport. Most of these courses will take between five to ten weeks. There is also the possibility to make reservations on the various facilities to organize your own workouts with fellow (foreign) students.

students play a game of futsal

Are you prepared?

The ACLO is not the only organization for (foreign) students to facilitate sporting activities. There are many more ‘regular’ associations or gyms who offer the same. Yet, they normally lack the contact with the universities of Groningen. Of course, the initiative for a healthy lifestyle lays with the (foreign) student itself. Are you prepared to be part of the healthy 67 percent?