The Netherlanders love for sports. The love is not just limited to Football, Hockey or Ice-Skating. Dutch has history traditional or regional sports.
Sport plays an important role in the daily lives of the Dutch, as evidenced by the number of sports associations and their existing members. Approximately 4.5 million Dutch people are members of a total of approximately 35,000 sports associations. With accounting for approximately 30% of the total population.
Let’s delve deep to learn about some of the unique traditional sports activities that Dutch people are fond of.
It’s called jumping canals. The Netherlands is full of canals and inventing a game on canals was bound to happen. Participants do this by utilizing an 8-13-metre-long pole with a flat circular plate on the end to keep it from sinking into the muddy bottom.
The fierljeppen method entails running, jumping, grabbing the pole, and climbing to the top as rapidly as possible while attempting to control the direction of its fall. Competitors must land on a sandbed opposite their starting position to finish the game.
Beugelen / Croquet
The game is played with a stone ball and wooden ball. A wooden shovel is used to push a heavy ball, and the goal is to get the ball through the ring in the center of the floor, similar to a cross between croquet and boules.
The game refers to the throwing of a ball as far as possible. There are two teams and each has to make their way across the field or paved area in the fewest amount of throws possible.
There are three different styles of this game namely field, street and standing style.
In the field version of Klootschieten, the team has to reach a patch of grass with the fewest throws. The field kloot is made of wood and lead and is 7-8 cm in diameter. There are curves and difference of heights in the course and the real skill is to ensure the ball reaches the patch of grass in the minimum number of throws
In the street version of this game, the rules are similar to field version but the course changes from field to street and the ball is heavier. The ball has to be kept away from gutters and long grass.
In the standing style, the main aim is to make sure the ball travels in the air as far as possible. As soon as the ball hits the ground, the measurement of the throw also ends. Klootshieten is actually the German name for standing style.
Also, read our article: How is the Netherlands working towards food wastage?
One of the oldest games played in the world is played with ball with bare hands. The game is played in two teams and is scored in the same manner as tennis is. It is impressive to see how the ball is being hit by just hand.
Wherever the ball lands is marked with a small wooden block called a kaats, and the point is held to be ‘undecided’. Play then re-starts from the point marked out by the block. Scoring is similar to tennis, but points take the form of 2-4-6-game.
Paalzitten (Pole Sitting)
Sitting on a pole! Yes, it is true, it’s a game which can be won by sitting on a pole for a longer period of time. The poles are set up in the water so that anyone who falls off is not injured.
Modern poles are usually equipped with a sit and backrest so the competitors don’t get too uncomfortable. Also the rules allow for toilet breaks every few hours which wasn’t always this lax back in the early 1970’s. Even under these strict conditions, during the 1972 Paalzitten world championship, someone managed to sit on a wooden pole for 92 consecutive hours.
Two eight-person teams compete to get the ball into the opponent’s korf, or basket. A Dutch primary school teacher developed the game in 1902, and it is still one of the few mixed-gender sports, with four men and four women on each team.
The Main Rules
💠 The ball is played with the hands only.
💠 Controlled physical contact is allowed.
💠 A player can’t move with the ball in the hands.
💠 A player can’t take a shot if they are being ‘defended’
💠 The court is divided into two halves, players can’t cross the halfway line.
💠 Two positions are played, attack and defense.
Its a race where the participants needs tp cross the muddy canals in the farm fields.