Lenie de Nijs

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Lenie de Nijs
A. Voorbij , L. de Nijs 1961.jpg
Lenie de Nijs (right) and Atie Voorbij in 1961
Personal information
Born 1939 (age 77–78)
Hilversum, the Netherlands
Sport Swimming
Strokes Freestyle, backstroke
Club HZC de Robben, Hilversum
Coach Jan Stender

Lenie de Nijs (born 1939) is a retired Dutch swimmer. In July-August 1955 she broke three freestyle world records over 1500 m, 880 yd and 1760 yd distances. She then changed to backstroke, winning three national titles over 100 m (1956–1958) and setting world records in the 200 m backstroke (1957) and 4×100 m medley relay events (1956 and 1958); she set her last record while winning the European title in Budapest, together with Ada den Haan, Cocky Gastelaars and Atie Voorbij. She qualified for the 1956 Summer Olympics, but could not participate due to the boycott of those games by the Netherlands.[1]

As a child, de Nijs was diagnosed with chronic asthma and bronchitis and the doctor advised her to join a sport club to improve health.[2] After retiring from swimming she married the Dutch water polo player Harry Vriend on 4 October 1963.[3] Her younger sister Judith[4] was also a world-level swimmer who married a water polo player.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lenie de Nijs. zwemmenindepolder.nl
  2. ^ Lenie de Nijs: Zwemkapioen ondanks astma. verteldeverhalen.ntr.nl
  3. ^ Zwemster Lenie de Nijs huwt met Harry Vriend. gahetna.nl
  4. ^ Sportjournaal. Niewsblad van het Noorden (1958-02-17).
  5. ^ Judith de Nijs. zwemmenindepolder.nl
Preceded by
Ragnhild Hveger
Women's 1500 metres freestyle
world record holder (long course)

23 July 1955 – 21 August 1956
Succeeded by
Jans Koster
Preceded by
Philippa Gould
Women's 200 metres backstroke
world record holder (long course)

17 May 1957 – 1 August 1958
Succeeded by
Chris von Saltza