Beorn Nijenhuis is a Dutch former Olympic speed skater. He began speed skating in his native Canada, but moved to The Netherlands at the age of 13, and began competing for his new country upon receiving his Dutch citizenship.
Starting with the 2006 Torino Winter Olympics, Beorn Nijenhuis spent eight years as a professional speed skater, setting national records and winning multiple national and international titles. He has been a standout in the men’s 1000 meter on the international scene, ranking second in the Speed Skating World Cup standings and finishing fifth at the 2005 World Single Distance Championships. He was third in the final 1500 meter World Cup rankings, and was national record holder in the 1000 meter from 2008 to 2012.
However, he found the world of professional sports to be one-dimensional and unsatisfying – and began studying literature and philosophy while still competing, and collected sufficient credits for a Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy and Literature.
Upon his retirement from professional sports, Beorn Nijenhuis began a new chapter studying science. He completed his Masters in Neuroscience at the University Utrecht and is currenlty pursuing funding with experts for a Phd studying the neuroscientific correlates of motor ability in professional musicians as well as teaching and performing research on professional musicians at the conservatory of amsterdam.
Beorn Nijenhuis has a personal goal of synthesizing his own experience in sports with neuroscience to change people’s lives. Drawing on both his academic training and his personal journey as a top athlete, he possesses a diverse and unique set of tools and experience that he employs in all his keynotes and presentations.
A skilled and inspiring speaker, Beorn uses his talks to study the most fascinating and groundbreaking neuroscientific discoveries and how these shape the pursuit of excellence.