Iet van Feggelen - Hall Of Fame Pioneer

Iet van Feggelen (NLD)
BirthplaceAmsterdam, Netherlands Current City
CountryNetherlands FlagNetherlands
Birthplace:Amsterdam, Netherlands
Current City:
Birth Date:
  • Was one of Holland's premier backstrokers during the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s.
  • Set eight individual and three relay World Records during her career.
  • Served as the coach of the Dutch Swimming Federation for the Olympic Games in 1964 and 1968. 
  • Founded the Europe's first synchronized swimming team in 1947.
  • Set 11 World Records: 100m backstroke (three times), 200m backstroke (two times), 3x100m medley relay (two times), 400m backstroke, 150y backstroke, 100m backstroke, and 3x100y medley relay.
  • Started the first-ever synchronized swimming team in Europe.
// BIO

For a 20-year period, Dutch backstroke swimmers held all the World backstroke records between Rie Mastenbroek, Nina Senff, Cor Kint and Iet van Feggelen in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s.

Van Feggelen reached her swimming prime following the Olympic Games in 1936. In 1938 and 1939, she set eight individual World Records in backstroke distances from 100 yards to 400 meters.

Her Olympic ambitions were denied when World War II prevented her from competing in the cancelled 1940 Games. There were no Olympic Games in 1944, but she kept swimming. Almost a decade later following the war, she swam on Holland’s 3x100 medley relay teams en route to setting three world records in the process.

In 1947, she toured the United States with Hall of Fame teammate Nel van Vliet. During this time, she discovered synchronized swimming. Upon her return home, she started the first synchronized swimming team in Holland and subsequently in Europe.

Holland’s Jan Armbrust followed Iet’s Dutch synchro success with his own team a few years later, eventually becoming very active in the international synchronized swimming scene. During this time, Iet’s brother, Rudy, was playing water polo on the Dutch National Team and won the bronze medal at the 1948 London Olympic Games.

The Dutch Swimming Federation selected her as a coach for the Olympic swimming teams in 1964 and 1968.