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Joining a sports club to meet new people Have you ever wondered why Germans repeatedly excel in international sporting events? One of the reasons is the organized network of clubs that offers a wide range of activities at reasonable prices to everyone. Sports in Germany are a great equalizer, cutting across social and occupational strata. Joining a sports club in Germany is a great way to make contact with people from all walks of life in a fun atmosphere. Indeed, one of the best parts of being a sports club member is retreating to the pub with other club members after a good workout.

The range of sports offered by these non-profit clubs is enormous - soccer, tennis, horseback riding, track and field, aerobics, swimming and, increasingly, international sports such as baseball, rugby and even American football. For a full listing of the sports clubs available in your region, contact the local sports office (Sportamt) in the city or county government. In addition, the Sports Association of Hessen (Landessportbund Hessen) can provide you with more information about sports clubs throughout the state. The best way to find a club is to consult the www.sport-in-hessen.de website, where all you need to do is go to their search engine and punch in your postal code. In Frankfurt, you can also consult www.sportkreis-frankfurt.de

Membership fees vary greatly, depending on the type of sport, the size of the club and the quality of the facilities. But as a general guideline, individual memberships cost between 100-250 euros per year - with discounts for students and children. Family memberships are usually a good deal ... much cheaper than several individual memberships. It is important to note that once you become a registered member of a German sports club, you are automatically insured under that club's policy should you become injured.

Many clubs allow you to work out several times before formally committing to a membership. You can also check out the website www.mainova-sport.de which runs a similar program. Frankfurt's largest sports clubs is the Turngemeinde Bornheim, founded in 1860 and located in the northeastern neighborhood of Bornheim, just outside the city ring. The choice of sports here is broad. There is the traditional array of sports including hockey, football, golf, gymnastics, soccer, handball, basketball, weightlifting and swimming. But one can also lean toward the wilder side, with activities such as Qi Gong, oriental dance, aquarobics for seniors and even accordion lessons. Here is a listing of several of the larger sports clubs in Frankfurt:

Eintracht Frankfurt
Am Erlenbruch 25
60386 Frankfurt
Tel: 01805-74 318 99

Frankfurter Turn- und Sportgemeinschaft 1847
Marburgerstr. 28
60487 Frankfurt
Tel: 069-97 080 30

FTV 1860
Pfingstweidstr. 7
60316 Frankfurt
Tel: 069 - 43 29 06

Polizeisportverein Grün-Weiß Frankfurt
Am Römerhof 13
60486 Frankfurt
Tel: 069-70 80 10

Sportclub Frankfurt 1880
Feldgerichtsstr. 29
60320 Frankfurt
Tel: 069-55 02 62

Turngemeinde Bornheim
Bergerstr. 294
60385 Frankfurt
Tel: 069-46 000 40

Turngemeinde Sachsenhausen
Mörfelder Landstrasse 106a
60598 Frankfurt
Tel: 069-66 37 47 12

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