Olympic Training Centre Papendal


Olympic Training Centre Papendal is the largest elite sports training centre in the Netherlands. Today, about 550 elite athletes use the top facilities, 400 on a daily basis. Papendal has been used as a training location for elite sports since the seventies.

Over the years, Papendal has changed tremendously. The past ten to twelve years have particularly been a period of rapid development for the Olympic Training Centre. Today experts consider Papendal among the three best training centres all over the world. Papendal is a Centre for Elite Sports and Education. This means training, living and studying at one location. With limited travel time. Required support and facilities are all within reach for the elite athletes. Think of training accommodations, educational support and (para)medical facilities. But also, sports scientific support, mental support and more.

Sport Science & Innovation

To support elite athletes and coaches sports scientifically, Papendal employs embedded scientists. Scientists who are specialized in biomechanics. Or exercise physiology. Embedded means that the they are closely involved with the practice of sports. Instead of operating from a university. The scientists have been scientifically educated, but with a practical character. They perform tests and measurements in order to follow the progress of elite athletes. For instance excercise tests or motion analyses. Optimising the jump shot technique or measuring the viewing habits. And they are concerned with various researches, in conjunction with knowledge institutions.

Most tests are performed during the training sessions at the sports accommodations. But for some tests, a lab is required. Therefore Papendal features an exercise lab. Where the Wingate test can be performed for example. This sprint test on a bicycle ergometer measures the maximum sprint capacity during 30 seconds. It gives the elite athlete more insight into the start capacity, acceleration capability and the maximum duration of the sprint. In addition, the sports scientists perform VO2-max tests in the lab. On a treadmill or a bike. This is an exercise test which measures the maximum oxygen uptake.

Sometimes, elite athletes participate in a tournament at height. Or in a city with high humidity. You want to be prepared as much as possible. Therefore, Papendal has a climate room where these extreme conditions can be simulated. Elite athletes can use the climate room for various trainings. These include pre-acclimatisation, interval and repeated sprint training at height, heat training and rehabilitation at height.

Nutritional innovation

Olympic Training Centre Papendal is world leading in the area of sports nutrition. Nutrition is very important for elite athletes. Because the right diet can contribute to a good performance. With the realization of the Elite Sports Restaurant Papendal took a big step forward in the field of nutrition. Various nutritional innovations have been developed and tested in cooperation with a broad range of partners. The elite athlete is always the main focus in this. After all, they have to find the new products tasty. Various successful innovations were created and tested in the restaurant such as: sports bread, sports quark and sports bars.

How we get to these ideas? Product recipes are analysed. Then healthy versions are thought of, such as the sports pizza with chicken and vegetables. All to bring proteins, carbohydrates and fats in meals in balance. For maximum recovery after intensive training.