Sport is a popular leisure activity in Germany. Find out how playing sports with others can help you socialise and feel at home in Germany.
If you play a team sport, you’ll have fun without having to talk much. Some just kick a ball around on a field, others sit there and cheer. Sport connects people of all ages, sexes and backgrounds. One thing unites them all: striving for a common goal and celebrating success. That's how friendships develop. You share life, get to know other people, support, show consideration and encourage each other.
Sport is an easy way to get to know people from the area you live in. You learn how they live, what they think and gradually learn their language. In addition, playing sports with other people is good for your body, mind and soul. It gives you the chance to do something meaningful in your everyday life, and the regular training sessions and games help you structure your week.
You also learn things about yourself when you do sport together. You inevitably experience your own limits, both physically and as a team, and grow beyond yourself. Once you’ve overcome such hurdles, you’ll enjoy more self-esteem and a greater satisfaction.
Regular sport can be helpful in finding a job. Employers are mostly looking for people who are determined and persistent in their work. If an employer hears that you have been spending your time regularly keeping fit and doing something sensible, this may positively influence your job chances.
Contact with locals at sports clubs may also prove helpful in finding a job, as they may know which company has vacancies, or may be able to refer you to other contacts.
By the way: In sport, as in life in general, certain rules apply. We recommend you get to know and respect them because they are important for the cohesion of the sporting community. Fairness, good cooperation and respect are fundamental. In addition to the rules of a particular sport, there are also general rules, e.g. in a gym must be worn indoor shoes.
In sport you have the chance to improve both your physical and interpersonal skills. If you want to get more involved, you can work to obtain a trainer’s certificate, which entitles you to train children and adults in your sports club. In this way, you can positively influence your surroundings and give something back to society.
Sport naturally also helps locals to make contact with you. Some locals will be unsure how to meet foreigners in a relaxed manner and communicate with them. Sporting activities therefore offer opportunities for both sides. Cultural exchange can take place if both sides bring in their background and culture in good faith and treat the other’s way of life with curiosity and respect.
Almost every kind of sport is possible in Germany, with men and women, young and old, fit and less fit people all involved. The health aspect often plays a key role for adults, whereas children mainly want to have fun.
There are countless sporting opportunities. Many people in Germany go cycling or jogging or go to the gym on their own. Once a contract has been concluded, you can take advantage of various options there. There are relatively cheap possibilities (approx. €20/month), but also very expensive, specialist programs, e.g. for bodybuilding or health training.
Football, gymnastics and tennis are among the most popular club sports. But swimming, judo and badminton are also popular. Some sports clubs, especially in smaller towns, have only limited capacities for top athletes. That is why they often only accept people who are already experienced in the respective sport.
For most people, the best thing to do in these clubs is the so-called “grassroots sport”. There you can have fun and enjoy physical exercise without committing yourself to sport at the highest level.
In many places in Germany churches offer sports where everyone who wants to take part is welcome. These sports groups are usually free of charge and often offer additional opportunities for joint activities.
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