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Tomorrow, the Olympics will start in PyeongChang in South Korea. The Games have something magical, even if you don't like sports that much. Perhaps it's because the Olympic Games are a centuries-old tradition, or because of that special ceremony of lighting the Olympic flame, but one thing is certain: most of us become patriotists during the Games, and we have no problem to stay up all night to cheer and shout to the TV. This year, we will have to stay up late indeed, because we have about eight hours of time difference with PyeongChang.


The athletes have trained intensively for years for this one, sometimes short moment, to achieve the performance of their lives. At the moment, Pyeonchang is still under the spell of the norovirus, and a Siberian cold that flows slowly towards the Olympic cities.... Fortunately, the temperature of -19 degrees Celsius will rise slowly, but still, it won’t be very pleasant. Winter athletes from all over the world arrived in Pyeonchang this week, to acclimatize and settle for the opening ceremony when they were confronted with that huge cold. I wonder whether there is really still a very high level of training, but they will undoubtedly be busy with their performance and any medal (s).


Perhaps this Siberian cold may take something else with it, because more to the left of South Korea, the Nenets are always busy with training. They don’t train for a single moment, but they are constantly training and learning. However, they are not rewarded with a medal, nor are they honored for their work, but they create a bond for life.


The Siberian Nenets live closely with reindeer. In this they are not special; the Sami and Chukchi are also dependent on these animals. But the Nenets are the only ones who have managed to ride them. From generation to generation, knowledge is passed on about the training of the animals, and a wild reindeer, which initially seems unmanageable, is saddled and ridden within a few hours.


How do they achieve this? Because every Nenet has their own reindeer, which he or she takes care of from a young age and thus grows a band for life. The reindeer know that they can rely on man, and that they will be protected when needed. In return, the reindeer enter into a symbolic commitment; they let man ride on their backs and transport them over the ice. And it is precisely this knowledge of training and the power of learning that is passed on from generation to generation.


Maybe it's going to come along with that Siberian cold, but I'm convinced that the Winter athletes have been ready for it for a long time. I'm going to watch, perhaps not in the middle of the night, but I'm curious about which medals we might take home with us.


Of course we have given the Nenets a place in one of our locations, so that we can learn everything about training and education. And no better location for this Hero-Tribe is one where start-ups are popping up, who all want to learn a lot: Düsseldorf!

Want to know more about the Nenets? Sign up for the grand opening on 22 February via, or book a tour at Tribes Düsseldorf GAP,, 0800 22 55 874!