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About Dirk

With a background in Sport Studies, a specialization in sports performance paired with dietetics, and a different fitness philosophy, Dirk has made his own path in the world of strength & conditioning and lifestyle improvement.


Before embarking on this journey, he was working in the Web Development industry. After finding his true passion in fitness & (teaching) self-improvement, he went on to study sports science. At the turn of 2020, he co-founded “BearFit Nederland” in a creative collaboration with David, his former coach and supervisor.


His core value is that any person can find their way in life through physical exertion and the mental challenge that comes with it, because he believes that our deepest roots lie in overcoming physical challenges. Whether it is about finding a new sport, feeling healthier, gaining or losing body mass or creating personal milestones, Dirk connects with you via the most human subject: our motivation in life.


Job description
Utilizing his eagerness to learn, he spends many hours both in the gym and behind the computer. In the gym, he finds the opportunity to coach dozens of people, from young individuals to the elderly, and from subpar beginners to advanced athletes. Behind the computer, surfing the vast internet, he stays up-to-date on developments in the fitness industry so that BearFit’s clients get the service they deserve.


With this work method, his job consists of guiding novice, intermediate or advanced athletes to the lifestyle and training programming that allows them to reach their goals. Additionally, he focuses on making sure his clients become self-sufficient athletes, because it is in his best interest to teach you how you can face the obstacles of the future by yourself, whether he is your guiding hand or not (“Once a Bear, always a Bear!”)


Throughout the years, Dirk has had dozens of opportunities for long-term coaching. With BearFit, he has had multiple effective coaching sessions leading to drastic transformations in terms of strength performance. His clients, often Kodiak Bears or Panda Bears, not only become stronger to perform better and to be healthier


a seasonal Kodiak Bear transformation, coached by Dirk


Visible above is one such as example. A fresh Bear Cub, having just finished his introductory coaching sessions and training program, crushed his goals of gaining muscle mass and physical strength. Through linear progression and correct exercise technique assessments and adjustments, this individual experienced the following increases:


  • ●     Bodyweight increase of 6 kilograms
  • ●     (Low bar) squat from 60 kilograms to 90 kilograms (five rep. max)
  • ●     Deadlift from 90 kilograms to 130 kilograms (five rep. max)
  • ●     (Shoulder) press from 35 kilograms to 47.5 kilograms (five rep. max)
  • ●     Bench press from 50 kilograms to 65 kilograms (five rep. max)
  • ●     Pendlay row from 40 kilograms to 62.5 kilograms (five rep. max)


The above example summarizes many of his clients’ progressions. Though the numbers may vary, as do the individuals that he coaches, what is sure is that you will get stronger and healthier with consistency and effort.
These results are what matter when you are trying to introduce drastic lifestyle changes and/or achieve personal milestones.


By drawing knowledge and experiences from traditional barbell strength training and Olympic weightlifting he is able to apply effective strength training to his clients. Many Kodiak and Panda Bears will undergo a similar progression as Dirk himself once did, meaning he will personally relate to every step of your progress.

His own background shows that his beliefs in strength training are not mere marketing! Dirk works part-time in the military as a reservist, and has roots in a variety of sports outside of strength training, mostly in the martial arts (grappling & kickboxing) and endurance sports (trailrunning, traithlons, obstacle runs, cycling)

Some of his most prized achievements and experiences in sports include:


  • ●     Squatting 105 kilograms for five sets (5×5)
  • ●     Climbing (cycling) the Mont-Ventoux in two and a half hours with minimal cycling experience
  • ●     Completing six Strong Viking Runs
  • ●     Completing a 1/8th Triathlon with minimal cycling and swimming experience
  • ●     Attending grappling seminars, gyms, and training sessions around Europe (including Robin Gracie seminars and Mjölnir MMA in Reykjavik, Iceland)
  • ●     Coaching BearFit members!


Dirk enjoys applying substantiated coaching methods while figuring out what drives you as an athlete. Transformations in the fields of self-confidence, resilience, and self-defense are his passion, as he is always working on these subjects himself. He takes the most fulfillment out of turning untrained individuals into novice (and beyond) athletes.

As a Kodiak Bear Coach, he focuses on turning untrained aspirants into novice athletes. This often includes building up towards lifting their first big numbers. After applying his basic strength training principles, he likes to follow up with a season of mass building, where he utilizes a bodybuilding approach for his athletes. When his athletes want to advance past this point as a Kodiak Bear, the doors are open for specific Powerlifting and Olympic Weightlifting programming and coaching.

As a Panda Bear Coach, he likes to focus on the fulfillment that strength training can provide. Panda Coaching involves specific programming, supplemented with a lifestyle approach to training and living. You’ll notice Coach Dirk has a different approach to the Panda way of training, which in his eyes are all about relaxing, training hard, and enjoyment. His background and personal interests in yoga, philosophy and sports psychology are of good use here.

Furthermore, his educational background and specialization qualifies him to work in environments with a critical inquisitive and reflective attitude in the field of physical training and performance. Examples of such environments are: regional/(inter)national (top) sports organizations, personal training studios, medical sports centers, and departments for physical education and sports in the military, police, and fire department sectors.


Favorite bear
The “Spirit Bear”; rare black bears with a creamy white furs and nearly white claws (they are not polar bears or albinos). This subspecies of the American black bear is extremely rare, with an estimated population of 100 to 500. Among its local population, it surprisingly excels in catching salmon due to its odd fur. Still, this animal lives a mostly herbivore lifestyle in the coastal forests of Canada.

Like many BearFit members, Dirk relates to this Bear type on a personal level, perhaps a bit distant from a sports perspective (which is what we usually relate it to at BearFit). He sees the uniqueness of this species as a reflection of his own eccentricness. The diet and lifestyle of this bear speaks to him. Eating mostly plants while roaming in a cold climate, surrounded by high trees and water is what Dirk often tries to recreate in his lifestyle and outdoor adventures.

Lastly, the mystical name of this animal is something that sparks, within Dirk, the vision and mission of BearFit as an organization of coaches.