Sports trips less popular

In the Netherlands, people prefer active participation in sports rather than watching sports events or assisting in sports activities. Active participation is nearly seven times as popular as watching sports events. Participation in sports day trips was less popular in 2007 than in 2002.

Walking and cycling popular sports trips

Last year, walking and cycling were popular activities, followed at a distance by jogging, running, fitness, horseback riding and water sports. Altogether, the participation rate in sports-related day trips was lower than in 2002. Young people aged between 15 and 25 are most keen on sports. Proportionally, they are most often involved in sports activities for more than two hours.

Sports-related day trips


In one in three trips, 25 to 45-year-olds are involved as spectators or attendants
Men account for nearly two thirds of sports-related day trips where no active participation is required. In one in three day trips, 25 to 45-year-olds participate as spectators and sports attendants. This kind of participation in sports events among 25 to 45-year-olds has declined by over 20 percent since 2002. In all other age categories, there was an increase.

Sports club membership, 2006


Increase in number of sports clubs and membership

Many active athletes practise their sport as members of a sports club. In 2006, total sports club membership amounted to 5.2 million, 3 percent up on 2000. Outdoor football is the most popular sport with 1 million club members in 2006, followed by tennis with 14 percent. Golf is becoming increasingly popular, accounting for 4 percent of the total number of sports club members.

Sports clubs by membership, 2006


There were more than 27.5 thousand sports clubs in the Netherlands in 2006, i.e. 3.5 percent more than in 2000. The average sports club has 190 members. Membership may vary considerably: 35 percent of sports clubs has no more than 50 members, in 38 percent of cases membership varies between 51 and 200 and 9 percent have more than 500 members. Golf clubs often have a large membership.

Jamilja van der Meulen and Maico Hoksbergen