Sports

The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany 

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Updated October 13, 2018 2.5k votes 232 voters 16.3k views 204 items

This is a list of the greatest Olympic athletes from Germany, with photos when available. These are the best German Olympians of all time who have had the honor of representing their country at the prestigious Olympic games. German athletes from every era all have their place in the Olympic history books, but which German Olympian is the best of them all? You can decide who the greatest Olympic competitor from Germany is by how many medals they took back to their country, but that isn't the only factor that comes into play when considering who the best really is.

This list includes athletes such as Fabian Wegmann, Philipp Zwiener, Dirk Nowitzki and many additional athletes as well. In the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, figure skating duo Aljona Savchenko and Bruno Massot took home figure skating gold.

America, Russia and Great Britain have the most Olympic medals out of every country that has been represented in the Olympics, but it doesn't mean that Olympic competitors from other nations don't deserve accolades as well. Vote for your favorite Germany Olympic athletes on this list, and downvote the ones that you don't think had a huge impact on Germany. After you are finished voting on this list, head on over and check out the best Olympic athletes from Norway.

list ordered by
1
Dirk Nowitzki is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1978-06-19

Place Of Birth: Würzburg, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Basketball

Nationality: Germany

Weight: 111.0

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Dirk Werner Nowitzki (German pronunciation: [ˈdɪʁk ˈvɛʁnɐ noˈvɪtski]) (born June 19, 1978) is a German retired professional basketball player. An alumnus of Röntgen Gymnasium and the DJK ...more

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#13 of 870 The Top NBA Players Of All Time #22 of 2,181 The Best Athletes Of All Time #2 of 243 The Best White Players in NBA History

2
Magdalena Neuner is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Magdalena Neuner Women's 7.5 km Sprint, Women's 10 km Pursuit, Women's 12.5 km Mass Start

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1987-02-09

Place Of Birth: Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Biathlon

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Biathlon at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's sprint, Biathlon at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's pursuit, Biathlon at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's mass start

Weight: 55.9

Olympic Medalist Games: 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Silver medal, Gold medal

Magdalena "Lena" Neuner (since her 2014 marriage legally Magdalena Holzer, born 9 February 1987) is a retired German professional biathlete. She is the most successful woman of all ...more
3
Britta Steffen is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's 100m freestyle, Women's 50m freestyle

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1983-11-16

Place Of Birth: Schwedt, Germany, Brandenburg, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Swimming

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Swimming at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Women's 100 metre freestyle, Swimming at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Women's 50 metre freestyle

Olympic Medalist Games: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal

Britta Steffen (born 16 November 1983) is a German competitive swimmer who specializes in freestyle sprint events. In 1999, Steffen won six titles at the European Junior Championships, and won a ...more
4
Jan Ullrich is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Men's Road cycling, individual road race, Men's Road Cycling

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1973-12-02

Place Of Birth: Rostock, Germany, Europe, Western Europe, Earth, + more

Olympic Sport: Cycling

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Cycling at the 2000 Summer Olympics - Men's individual road race, Cycling at the 2000 Summer Olympics - Men's Individual Time Trial, Cycling at the 2004 Summer Olympics - Men's individual road race

Weight: 80.0

Olympic Medalist Games: 2000 Summer Olympics, 2004 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2000 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Silver medal

Jan Ullrich (German pronunciation: [ˈjan ˈʊlrɪç]); born 2 December 1973) is a German former professional road bicycle racer. Ullrich won gold and silver medals in the 2000 Summer Olympics ...more
5
Claudia Pechstein is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's 5000 m, Women's 3000 m

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1972-02-22

Place Of Birth: East Berlin

Olympic Sport: Speed skating

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Speed Skating at the 1998 Winter Olympics – Women’s 5000m, Speed skating at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's team pursuit, Speed Skating at the 2006 Winter Olympics - Women's 5000m, Speed Skating at the 2002 Winter Olympics – Women’s 3000m, Speed Skating at the 1998 Winter Olympics - Women's 3000m, + more

Olympic Medalist Games: 1998 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics, 2002 Winter Olympics, 1994 Winter Olympics, 1992 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2002 Winter Olympics, 1994 Winter Olympics, 1992 Winter Olympics, 1998 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Silver medal, Bronze medal

Claudia Pechstein (born 22 February 1972) is a German speed skater. She has won five Olympic gold medals. With a total of nine Olympic medals, five gold, two silver and two bronze, she was the ...more

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#479 of 2,181 The Best Athletes Of All Time #21 of 229 The Best Female Athletes of All Time #7 of 40 The Greatest Speed Skaters of All Time

6
Fabian Hambüchen is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Men's Horizontal bar

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1987-10-25

Place Of Birth: Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, North Rhine-Westphalia, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Artistic gymnastics

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Gymnastics at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Men's Horizontal Bar

Olympic Medalist Games: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Bronze medal

Fabian Hambüchen (born 25 October 1987) is a retired German gymnast with a full set of Olympics medals, one in each colour, as he is the 2016 Olympic champion, 2012 Olympic silver medalist ...more
7
Anni Friesinger-Postma ... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's 1500m, Women's 3000 m, Women's 1000m

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1977-01-11

Place Of Birth: Bad Reichenhall, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Speed skating

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Speed Skating at the 2002 Winter Olympics - Women's 1500m, Speed Skating at the 1998 Winter Olympics - Women's 3000m, Speed skating at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's team pursuit, Speed Skating at the 2006 Winter Olympics - Women's 1000m, Speed skating at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's team pursuit

Olympic Medalist Games: 2002 Winter Olympics, 1998 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics, 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 1998 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics, 2002 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Bronze medal

Anna ("Anni") Christine Friesinger-Postma (born 11 January 1977) is a German former speed skater. Her father Georg Friesinger, of Germany, and mother Janina ("Jana") ...more
8
Britta Heidemann is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's Épée individual

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1982-12-22

Place Of Birth: Cologne, Germany, North Rhine-Westphalia, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Fencing

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Fencing at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Women's Épée, Individual

Olympic Medalist Games: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal

Britta Heidemann (born 22 December 1982) is a German épée fencer.
9
Birgit Prinz is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's football

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1977-10-25

Place Of Birth: Frankfurt, Germany, Hesse, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Football

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Football at the 2004 Summer Olympics - Women's tournament

Olympic Medalist Games: 2004 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Bronze medal

Birgit Prinz (born 25 October 1977) is a German retired footballer, two-time FIFA Women's World Cup champion and three-time FIFA World Player of the Year. In addition to the German national ...more

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#1 of 77 The Best Female Soccer Players of All Time #105 of 155 The Best Soccer Players from Germany

10
Amelie Kober is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's Parallel Giant Slalom

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1987-11-16

Place Of Birth: Bad Aibling, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Snowboarding

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Snowboarding at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's Parallel Giant Slalom

Olympic Medalist Games: 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Silver medal

Amelie Kober (born 16 November 1987 in Bad Aibling) is a German Federal Police officer and Olympic medalist in snowboarding.
11
Aliona Savchenko is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Pair skating

Olympic Country: Ukraine, Germany

Date Of Birth: 1984-01-19

Place Of Birth: Kiev, Ukraine, Russian Empire, Kiev Oblast, Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Figure skating

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Figure skating at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Pair skating

Olympic Medalist Games: 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Bronze medal

Aljona Savchenko (Ukrainian: Олена Валентинівна Савченко, Olena Valentynivna Savčenko; German Romanization: Aljona Sawtschenko, sometimes Aliona Savchenko; born 19 January 1984) is a ...more
12
Isabell Werth is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Dressage, team, Dressage

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1969-07-21

Olympic Sport: Dressage

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Equestrian at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Team dressage, Equestrian at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Dressage, Individual, Equestrian at the 1992 Summer Olympics - Dressage, Individual, + more

Olympic Medalist Games: 2008 Summer Olympics, 1992 Summer Olympics, 1996 Summer Olympics, 2000 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics, 1992 Summer Olympics, 1996 Summer Olympics, 2000 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Silver medal

Isabell Werth (born 21 July 1969 in Issum) is a German equestrian and world champion in dressage who competed in the Olympics five times (1992, 1996, 2000, 2008, 2016) winning ten medals, six of ...more
13
Ariane Friedrich is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1984-01-10

Place Of Birth: Nordhausen, Thuringia, Nordhausen, Germany, Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Track and field athletics

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Ariane Friedrich, born Tempel (born 10 January 1984 in Nordhausen) is a German high jumper. She won the silver medal at the 2009 World Championships and represented Germany at the 2008 Summer ...more
14
Erik Zabel is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Men's Road cycling, individual road race

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1970-07-07

Place Of Birth: Berlin, Germany, Neukölln, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Cycling

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Cycling at the 2004 Summer Olympics - Men's individual road race

Weight: 69.0

Olympic Medalist Games: 2004 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2004 Summer Olympics, 1992 Summer Olympics

Erik Zabel (born 7 July 1970) is a German former professional road bicycle racer who last raced with Milram. With 152 professional wins and 211 wins in his career, he is considered by some to be ...more
15
Laura Ludwig is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's Beach Volleyball

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1986-01-13

Place Of Birth: Berlin, Germany, Neukölln, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Beach volleyball

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Volleyball at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Women's beach volleyball

Olympic Medalist Games: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Laura Ludwig (born 13 January 1986) is a German professional beach volleyball player, playing as a defender. Currently forming a pair with compatriot Kira Walkenhorst, she represents Hamburger ...more

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#391 of 2,181 The Best Athletes Of All Time #80 of 229 The Best Female Athletes of All Time

16
Kati Wilhelm is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's 10 km Pursuit, Women's 4x6 km Relay, Women's 12.5 km Mass Start

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1976-08-02

Place Of Birth: Schmalkalden, Germany, Thuringia, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Biathlon

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Biathlon at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's pursuit, Biathlon at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's relay, Biathlon at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's relay, Biathlon at the 2002 Winter Olympics - Women's 4 x 7.5 km Relay, Biathlon at the 2002 Winter Olympics - Women's 10 km pursuit, + more

Olympic Medalist Games: 2006 Winter Olympics, 2010 Winter Olympics, 2002 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Bronze medal, Silver medal

Kati Wilhelm (born 2 August 1976 in Schmalkalden) is a German former professional biathlete. Like most German biathletes she is also a member of the German Armed Forces (Bundeswehr) with the ...more
17
Robert Bartko is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Men's Track cycling, Individual Pursuit

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1975-12-23

Place Of Birth: Potsdam, Germany, Brandenburg, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Cycling

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Cycling at the 2000 Summer Olympics - Men's Individual Pursuit

Olympic Medalist Games: 2000 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2004 Summer Olympics, 2000 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal

Robert Bartko (born 23 December 1975 in Potsdam) is a road bicycle and track cyclist from Germany, who was born in the former East Germany. He won two gold medals at the 2000 Summer Olympics in ...more
18
Heike Henkel is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's High jump

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1964-05-05

Place Of Birth: Kiel, Germany, Schleswig-Holstein, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Track and field athletics

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Athletics at the 1992 Summer Olympics - Women's high jump

Olympic Medalist Games: 1992 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 1992 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal

Heike Henkel (born Heike Redetzky on 5 May 1964) is a German former athlete competing in high jump. She won the high jump gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona.
19
Rainer Schüttler is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Men's Tennis, doubles

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1976-04-25

Place Of Birth: Korbach, Germany, Hesse, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Tennis

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Tennis at the 2004 Summer Olympics - Men's Doubles

Olympic Medalist Games: 2004 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2004 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Silver medal

Rainer Schüttler (German pronunciation: [ˈraɪnɐ ˈʃʏtlɐ]; born 25 April 1976) is a retired German professional tennis player. As of 2019, he is the most recent male German player to reach ...more
20
Claudia Nystad is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's Individual Sprint, Women's Team Sprint, Women's 4x5 km Relay

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1978-02-01

Place Of Birth: Zschopau, Germany, Saxony, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Cross-country skiing

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Cross-country skiing at the 2002 Winter Olympics - 4 x 5 Km relay, Cross-country skiing at the 2006 Winter Olympics - 4 x 5 Km relay, Cross-Country Skiing at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's Sprint Individual, Cross-country skiing at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's team sprint, Cross-country skiing at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's 4 x 5 kilometre relay

Olympic Medalist Games: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics, 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Silver medal

Claudia Nystad (née Künzel, born 1 February 1978) is a German top-level woman cross-country skier. She was born in Zschopau, East Germany, and represents the sports club WSC ...more
21
Alexander Resch is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Doubles

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1979-04-05

Place Of Birth: Berchtesgaden, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Luge

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Luge at the 2002 Winter Olympics - Men's Doubles, Luge at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Doubles

Weight: 75.0

Olympic Medalist Games: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal, Bronze medal

Alexander Resch (born 5 April 1979 in Berchtesgaden, Bavaria) is a German luger who competed from 1998 to 2010. Together with Patric Leitner, he won the men's doubles event at the 2002 Winter ...more
22
Matthias Steiner is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Men's Weightlifting, Super Heavyweight + 105kg

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1982-08-25

Place Of Birth: Vienna, Austria, Earth, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Weightlifting

Nationality: Germany, Austria

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Weightlifting at the 2008 Summer Olympics - Men's Super Heavyweight +105 kg

Olympic Medalist Games: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2008 Summer Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Gold medal

Matthias Steiner (born 25 August 1982 in Vienna) is a retired Austrian-German weightlifter, and Olympic gold medalist. As a native Austrian, he competed for Austria internationally from 1998 to ...more
23
Martina Glagow is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany
Women's 10 km Pursuit, Women's 4x6 km Relay, Women's 15 km Individual

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1979-09-21

Place Of Birth: Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Biathlon

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Medalist Event Competition: Biathlon at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's pursuit, Biathlon at the 2010 Winter Olympics – Women's relay, Biathlon at the 2006 Winter Olympics – Women's relay, Biathlon at the 2006 Winter Olympics - Women's Individual

Olympic Medalist Games: 2006 Winter Olympics, 2010 Winter Olympics

Olympic Games Participant: 2002 Winter Olympics, 2006 Winter Olympics

Olympic Medals Won: Silver medal, Bronze medal

Martina "Molly" Beck (born Martina Glagow; 21 September 1979 in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, West Germany), is a retired German biathlete. She now lives in Mittenwald in Bavaria. She was ...more
24
Felix Neureuther is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1984-03-26

Place Of Birth: Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, Bavaria, Europe, Western Europe, + more

Olympic Sport: Alpine skiing

Nationality: Germany

Olympic Games Participant: 2006 Winter Olympics

Felix Neureuther (German pronunciation: [ˈfeːlɪks ˈnɔʏʁɔʏtɐ]; born 26 March 1984) is a German retired World Cup alpine ski racer.

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#281 of 2,181 The Best Athletes Of All Time #41 of 74 The Greatest Alpine Skiers of All Time

25
Jochen Hecht is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Olympic Athletes from Germany

Olympic Country: Germany

Date Of Birth: 1977-06-21

Place Of Birth: Mannheim, Baden-Württemberg, Karlsruhe, Rhine Neckar Area, Germany, + more

Olympic Sport: Ice Hockey

Nationality: Germany

Weight: 90.0

Olympic Games Participant: 1998 Winter Olympics, 2002 Winter Olympics

Jochen Thomas Hecht (born 21 June 1977) is a German ice hockey coach and a former professional ice hockey player. He served as assistant coach for Adler Mannheim until May 2018. Hecht played 833 ...more