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South Africans in Germany

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Participating in Sports in Germany

Sports in Germany

South Africans are generally a sport-crazy bunch. Not just watching it, but also actively taking part. Participating in sports here in Germany has its challenges, mostly due to the weather. But, as the German saying goes – there isn’t something like bad weather, only bad clothing and many South Africans in Germany live by this motto and go out for a run or a cycle in what would be considered “stay home and light the fire” weather back in South Africa.

We will try and list some resources for some sports activities here to help you get “back into the saddle” here in Germany.


Running in Germany is a popular sport, even though it can get quite cold in Germany in winter. That being said, it also has a certain magic about going for a run in the snow – not to talk about the good training it is to run in ankle-deep snow, similar to running on beach sand!

The winter attire for running might be a little unusual for South Africans, especially the men, with tights galore. However, one runs not to look good while you run, but afterwards, right? Anyway, one overly freezing run without tights, convinces one to accept and adapt very fast.

In summer running is really a pleasure in Germany, since the tons of cycling routes available in Germany provide an excellent way to explore and build your running capacity without having to battle vehicular traffic. Another great pleasure of running in Germany is the fact that often a lake is normally not all too far away, so a quick dip to cool down is a real option on many running routes.

Running events and race day

Taking part in official running events (races, like half-marathons or marathons, etc) in Germany is a little less formalised than in South Africa, in the sense that you don’t have to belong to a club to join official runs. Most running events are organised by sports clubs and the participation fee covers all elements of the run. Generally speaking, the earlier you enter the race, the cheaper it becomes. Often you can also enter on the day of a race (as long as the maximum capacity has not been reached), at approximately double the cost of an early entrant.

What sometimes takes some getting used to is that races in Germany normally start much later in the day (a race starting at 10:00 or even later is not unusual, especially in winter) than in South Africa. Water supply during a race is also quite different in Germany than in South Africa, with cups being used rather than sachets as in SA, making it much harder to run-and-drink in our opinion. What you can also often do at many of the longer races is to prepare and drop off your own drinks a day before the race (normally when you pick up your race number) which the event organisers will then position for you along the route. This is a good way to get around the cup-drinking-mess if you are so inclined. Most larger races also offer good race logistics, such as bag drop services and shower facilities after the race.

Some good race listing sites suggested by our members are:

Everyday running and our Strava club

For your everyday running, the app Strava can help a lot to help you find routes in your local vicinity. We also have our own “South Africans in Germany” running club listed on Strava under the following link: Feel free to join our online running club there and share your running ups and downs with us. The Strava app is also the most popular app in South Africa, so you can follow and support both your friends back in South Africa as well as South Africans in Germany easily in one app.


Yes, cricket is played actively here in Germany. 

Playing cricket in Germany, yep you heard it right lols

Here is a shortened version on how my enthusiastic cricket photography, playing, umpiring, bus driving, usw path started. Let me Introduce myself to those who don’t know me yet. In and around the German cricket fraternity I am know as Kitters, which derived from the “kit man” era, which derived from my multifunctional activities in the German cricket world.


Read more about cycling on our cycle page

Feel free to join our Strava group under the following link where you can share your passion directly with other South Africans in Germany:


The entire cycling scene in Germany took some getting used to when I arrived here. In South Africa its sort of all kitted out serious health fanatics on bikes, and few other people ever use a bike after you’ve left school. However, the scene in Germany is significantly different. A survey on the frequency of bicycle usage in Germany 2017-2020 found


Swimming is a great low-impact workout that helps improve cardiovascular health and promote mental wellness. It is very unlikely for Fitness clubs (Gyms) to have swimming pools. If you would like to train for swimming as a sport, you will need to join a Swimming club (Schwimmverein)
Another option is to contact the German Life Saving Association (DLRG) or join a sports club like Urban Sports Club, which partners with many other clubs and sports facilities.
The Facebook group “Bist du heute shcon geschwommen” is very informative

Swimming in Germany

Swimming options Private swimming pools are not so popular in Germany, but there are good public swimming options available. Public swimming pools / Öffentliche Schimmbäder

Rugby, Soccer (Football) and other team sports

If you participate in team sports (especially rugby) here in Germany, please reach out to us via our contact form – we would love to share your club or events or experiences here.


Rugby is a growing sport in Germany and there are clubs and teams across the country where you can practice and play. You can join a local rugby club to learn and play the sport, meet new people, and have fun. Rugby is a great way to stay active and

Groups and Forums

There is a Sports forum on this website, that is open to everyone to read. To add content you need to be a registered member (no member fees)

We also have groups on our website. Currently, the sports-related groups are hiking, rugby, and cricket. Only members can see these groups. They can also great new groups and invite friends 

Watching sports

Cricket Worldcup 2023 The Match schedule is available on the website Watching your favourite sports on Television can be a challenge in Germany.  It is very tempting to use a VPN to watch the games on DSTV, but we strongly advice against it. Germany has stringent copyright laws.Do not violate copyright laws by illegally downloading a film, music, or other web content.  You can get heavy fines for doing so. You can read more about streaming on the European Consumer Centre Germany  – and

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The entire cycling scene in Germany took some getting used to when I arrived here. In South Africa its sort of all kitted out serious

Weather in Germany

German Climate Germany’s climate is temperate and marine, with cold, cloudy winters and warm summers and in the south occasional warm föhn wind. The greater

Emergency Contacts

The following numbers can be dialled in an emergency, either from a landline or mobile phone. 112The national emergency number. This can be used for