Typical Dutch: Physically Dutch

'I needed to find out what their secret was – or at least, one of them. '
Illustration: Henk van Ruitenbeek

It has been a year now since I arrived in the Netherlands and joined WUR. Among the many typical Dutch features and habits that have impressed me – like cycling, early dinner, lots of more group work, tall stature – the way the Dutch are always in shape and their active approach to work really stood out for me. I needed to find out what their secret was – or at least, one of them. After careful observation, I discovered one: physical fitness!

I noticed how sports and physical exercise is part of a typical Dutch lifestyle; be it walking, cycling, jogging or group sports.

I was inspired to make exercise part of my daily routine

My room gives me a good view and I see people jogging on the streets and the sports fields full of both children and adults with their coaches playing the different sports. The sports fields are busy during the day and sometimes even in the early evening.

This inspired me personally to take up sports and physical exercise and make it part of my daily routine. I challenged myself to take walks and cycle more often, and  I also joined fitness, aerobics and Zumba classes at De Bongerdsports centre. This has given me a remarkable boost in morale and I am now more active in my studies and my daily tasks as well. Unfortunately, the lockdown has put a stop to indoor group exercise  but thanks to the gym app and online workouts offered, I can still exercise in my room. Regardless of the coronavirus, I am still on my journey of learning to become typically Dutch by being physically Dutch.

Dinah Faith Nabudadiri, an MSc student of Plant Sciences from Uganda.

Do you have a nice anecdote about your experience of going Dutch? Send it in! 300 words max. Send it to resource@wur.nl and earn 25 euros and Dutch candy.

You may also like:

You must be logged in to write a comment.